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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I Am Redeeming Time

It’s morning after Christmas and the house sleeps. I know where the floor boards squeak complaint when stepped on there. I walk soft zigzag careful not to wake them. Nutmeg greets me morning “mew” in the guest room turned wrapping room.

And this ridiculous bright yellow life preserver under my arm. My prayer partner. I rescued it years ago from somewhere in the garage. And it’s rescued my knees ever since. We’re both well worn and so attached and I know I’ll leave this world the same way I entered, but will God allow this preserver past the gates?

“You will be kneeling on grace,” I hear Him say. And my knees sigh cricky.

I shift. Nudge space between rolls of wrapping paper, bags of bows and ribbons, a tape dispenser, construction paper, pinking shears and glue stick for handmade cards. All is unwrapped now.

And now I come to the Gift, “Unwrap me. Untie me. Lift me out of this box. I am Yours.”

I open Bible. Holy gift card with my name on it and it says, “I AM…yours.”

His love undoes me. Tissue paper falls away from heart and eye and wrapping lays crumpled at my feet and I am out of box. In light.

My soul stretches. And romps. Yes. Romps. I resist responsibility to “pack Christmas” and straighten room. I leave it all there and it’s a yellow dog morning outside. It’s all sun on face. Because, “I AM…yours.” Yes. Because all is light.

Long December arm reaches ray in hand and tilts my head back and presses warm gentle til my lids close. It’s how I see sun glory. Behind lid and straight on and orange gold glow moves slight when eye shifts slight.

I turn to look over my shoulder. There is shadow. My image lies down long behind me. Reminder to lay my life down. To live prostrate before God glory light and gold fire. To get me out of the way. Because as long as I am in this body and the taller I stand and the bigger I make me, there will be shadow.

I lay myself down. Flat in sun stream. I do. Right here on the leafy cold ground. And the shadow goes away.

I would read later about shadows in Wikipedia, “A shadow is made when an opaque object blocks a light source from traveling through it.”

I don’t want to cast shadows. Don’t want to live full of me. All opaque object.

I say to the Light of light, “Travel through me!”

“You are light in Me,” Jesus says and I am more amazed at this right now than ever before. Is it because I have never before physically laid down in leaf decay upon musty earth solely (and soul-ly) to remove my image? To give my soul physical illustration? To say, “This is what it looks like. Feels like. Smells like. To lay my life down. To remove my image.” I know it. Here.

I sink into the leaves and let this sink into my soul. The sun presses light. Warm on my back. A breeze stirs a few leaves and they walk. They do! All pointy toed on leaf tips. In the light. And Holy breath stirs me, “Walk as children of light.”

There is a leaf in my hair. I set it before me and think to God and myself, “Nothing reaches further faster than light.”
Because He said, “Let there be light.” And time was measured.
And I’m thinking that light redeems time.

I don’t know how. But I don’t need to know how. Just need to make it important to do it. To redeem time. Because it seems tomorrow is half gone before its come.

Time is flying. Fast. Because the days are evil. Because Satan knows his time is short and getting shorter.

But my time isn’t getting shorter. My days are forever and ever. And while Satan whirls dervish and spins the world dizzy til hands on clock and human soul are tight spring about to boing crazy angle and off handle beneath the stress, my God is the Ancient of Days Everlasting God. Still and unmoved.

And while Satan wraps time in warp and ties it in chain til it can’t be unwrapped and til time is strangled and we are breathless and both are consumed, me thinks it’s not so great to live fast blur. To speed through light too fast to see it.

“Redeem time,” says the Father of time. “Because the days are evil.”

I have made decision. And I’m not going to form the words, “Where has the time gone?” Or, “My, how this week has flown by.” I have bit them back a few times in the practice. Hard not to speak what I hear. But, keep saying this and one day it’ll be, “I can’t believe my life is already over. Where’d the time go?” No. No. No. That’s all shadow.

And speaking of shadow. Death is shadow. But speaking of redeeming time in evil days. Light is redemptive. And it reaches further faster…than shadow.

This morning God is more talkative than usual. He knows what shadow lies long and heavy this hour. A-cross. Heart.

“Be still, and know that I am God. Though she walks in the shadow of death, fear no evil. I lead beside still waters.”

I google the word “redeem.”

“Defray… Settle.”

When I’m in the fray and life is frayed, “defray” is the word.

“How?” I ask.


“How?” I’m slow.

“You are light in Me. Stand up in Me. Walk as a child of light,” says God and not Wikipedia.

I stand up and there is me-shaped shadow, of course. But whatever comes today, may my soul cast light. The only way I know is the way I’m told.

“Speak as song. Psalm words. Hymn language. Spiritual song melody. To others who need and to myself. And give thanks always for all things to God.”
(see Ephesians 5:16-21)

This is how. I don’t understand it, really. But I don’t have to know how it works to do it.

I felt the answer to “How.” Felt it warm on face and back when I settled down on leafy ground. Settled and defrayed. And isn’t that, “Be still and know that I am God” language?

Ahh! The everlasting arms that hold me have hands that hold time.

This is my reference for time. “Be Still and Know.” It’s spiritual song to sing. It’s a hymn in my hymnal. And could the rhythm of “Be Still and Know” be how His heart beats?

If my soul has a heart, and it does, then I want it to beat in time with God’s heart. And isn’t time measured in heart beats in the chest of the Light of the world?

Light changes everything.

written by: Carolyn Roehrig

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