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Know Jack #305 What Time is It?

“The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.”

C.S. Lewis

I was told today that I have a terrible sense of time. It is true. Yesterday is all one day and separating the many daylight and light cycles isn’t easy. I suppose that is because memories all crowd together and I divide them by people rather than days, months, and years.

I do better with the future, ask only one who has been with me when I need to be somewhere at a specific time. Even before the military imprinted a particular measure of “on-time” on me, being late was anathema.

God, having a sense of humor, as seen to it that I have spent a good deal of my life living in cultures and with people who have no clue as to the value of being on time. In some cultures, a watch is just another piece of jewelry. Adapt, improvise, overcome—but they always find out I set the clocks ahead fifteen minutes.

But, it’s not really about being on time, is it? I mean I’ve been late—generally foaming at the mouth—but alive and in one piece. I survived, life went on, things got done. All except one thing, I haven’t changed. I think with good reason.

Being on time, for me, is about keeping my word and it’s about respecting the greatest commodity another person can give to me, their time. It’s about integrity, duty, and honor that is my due to myself and others. Granted it’s a very small thing, but big things grow from small seeds.

I have found that the creative power I enjoy in my writing is available to me in all matters of life. It is as possible for me to create an atmosphere of love, kindness, and respect for myself and others as it is to bring from nothing but an idea my fictional world of Tettias.

In both cases, the work to be done is all mine. As is the decision about when to begin, when to gut out the hard parts, and how to rejoice with the best ending I can make—the one that evokes others to say—“Is that the end? I want more.”

If I have failed any of you in that regard, my sole excuse—and it is only an excuse—is that I am human and a weak one at that. My salvation is that while I wear this mortal man, it is always time to do better. I believe the greatest bit of practical teaching from the scriptures is this; “to every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven...” The secret is knowing what time it is and being on time to meet it when it arrives.


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