Monday, July 12, 2010

Times Gone By...

So...I've spent a lot of time the last few days just thinking...which I tend to do a lot! I'm a thinker, a ponderer, a wonderer....and there is a lingering fascination within me for the things of the past, for days gone by, for the ancient paths and history. I'll just share a few of my ruminations!

Today I did a one and half hour spinning class (which i shall spare you the details of..let's leave it at grueling for now!), and whilst I was attempting to make my feet go round as fast as the instructor I was watching people at gym. And this thought struck me. Isn't it funny that now in today's world gyms exist because people need to be encouraged/coerced/manipulated into keeping fit? And that say 50 or 100 years ago gyms did not exist because men worked in fields, and woman did their own housework etc etc - and by and large people kept fit because of their daily lives required it. But now, with the advance of technology, that's all changed. 

[as an aside I'll share this with you...last year there was a season where I was feeling really bored as a mother - just wondering what on earth I was supposed to be doing  (I'm a doer, not so much a be-er...can you tell?!). God showed me that it was because everything he had given us to enjoy, to do had been taken away from us in the name of progress - I don't grow my own veggies, or make my own clothes, or cook from scratch, or teach my own children (at that point) etc... because it's been made so much easier for me to have someone else do that for was such an epiphany. And as a result, modern women search for other things to fill their days...]

Now listen here, I'm not for once suggesting we all become Amish (no offence meant), or that you need to adopt my weird and wonderful rambling thought patterns. Nor do I regret the incredible advancements that have come our way because of the time in which we now live. And perhaps these epiphanies and thoughts are God's way of preparing me to go to the sticks (Zimbabwean colloquial expression for rural areas)....but isn't it just interesting? Or is it just me? :)

My uncle, who is just over 70, can still remember buying milk and vegetables from men who used to come down the streets in Woodstock with their horse drawn carts. He had one pair of shoes growing up, which were kept for Sunday church services, and one jersey each winter. He commented to me a while ago that he was saddened to see parents of today striving to give their children what they didn't have growing up (the material things), that these parents are neglecting to given them what they did have (love, time, patience etc).

That ties in with something else I read on this blog - that so often we are caught up in sacrificing the eternal on the altar of the immediate - I loved the way she wrote that... and it's so true. Life as we know it has become so fast paced, so relentless in its hustle and bustle that we are often too busy to see what really counts. When King Arthur asks me to build Lego with him, it's about honoring his heart and taking a few moments to build something with him, rather than doing the dishes straight away; when Aragorn asks to do some craft - indulge him; if Belle wants me to read her and her dolls a story - to make the time. Too soon, they will no longer ask, they will no longer need me. The dishes, the housework, the errands, the groceries - all those things are still going to be waiting for me. But they won't. They will grow up. They will move on. 

And my last thought - I was recently reminded that the only thing that really matters in life is the relationships we develop with those around us - our spouse, our children, our parents, siblings, family, friends. Can you see that thread running through the Bible from beginning to end? It's God's heartbeat, his passion. His relationship with us, and our relationship with others. Everything else...fades. I know we've all heard it countless times, but i'll say it again for the one is going to wish they worked harder on their deathbed; no one is going to appreciate the overtime you do necessarily...sandcastles in time.

food for thought!

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