Lockdown Day 196 – 8 October 2020 – The Seasons Of Our Lives

The Byrds made a song of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8.

“Turn! Turn! Turn!”

To everything – turn, turn, turn
There is a season – turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven

A time to be born, a time to die
A time to plant, a time to reap
A time to kill, a time to heal
A time to laugh, a time to weep

To everything – turn, turn, turn
There is a season – turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven

A time to build up, a time to break down
A time to dance, a time to mourn
A time to cast away stones
A time to gather stones together
To everything – turn, turn, turn
There is a season – turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven
A time of love, a time of hate
A time of war, a time of peace
A time you may embrace
A time to refrain from embracing

To everything – turn, turn, turn
There is a season – turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven

A time to gain, a time to lose
A time to rend, a time to sew
A time for love, a time for hate
A time for peace, I swear it’s not too late!

Two things made me think of this song.

The first is a post by Michael Olowu, a young Nigerian I follow on Facebook. On the one hand I follow him because I find his posts very valuable, and I follow him to see him succeed and reach his dreams, which he no doubt will. I would love to celebrate with him.

He made a post saying that time is all we have and we better spend it wisely.

I commented as follows, because I am all too aware of the value of time:

“Time = Life. Spend it wisely. Time is limited, we do not have infinite seconds. Time, unlike other resources, can never be replaced.”

Michael replied with this wisdom: “Time is like a coin, you can spend it how ever you want, but you can only spend it once.” 

That started me thinking of the Byrds’ song Turn, Turn. There is a time for everything and a purpose to every time under heaven. Isn’t that just wonderful? There is even a purpose to Covid-19, but that is something else.

Then I read this quote by a Linkedin Contact, Dr Ana Garcia:

Dr Ana

Life is in the Gap

“It is not the words, but the silence;
Not the walls, but the space inside;
It is not the effort or the stress, but the recovery;
Life is in the <GAP>.”

Those who know me will know that this will get the gears in my head churning every time.

 

To get an idea on this (and it is my interpretation, we will have to read her book to get her thoughts), lie on your bed and look at the room. The walls and ceiling and the floor. That creates a space, a GAP, and we live within that GAP.  Perhaps what I wrote about values and the value (or lack thereof) of words, brings a perspective on  silence? Because my Dad lived in the GAP, I have never doubted his love for me?

My first reaction was, Dr Ana is right, we live in the GAP “a time to be born, a time to die.” I have written about this before – birth and death are part of life. You cannot have the one without the other. I think the challenge is to use this <GAP> called LIFE, the most precious gift of all, in such a way that death should not be a threat. To live up to Stephan Covey’s “To live, to love, to leave a legacy.”


Get Dr Ana’s latest book at Amazon (affiliate link).

Sometimes I wonder if the fear of death is not the biggest, underlying, most denied and suppressed fear of all, inhibiting our enjoyment of life, preventing us from becoming all we can be.  There is no doubt that fear is our biggest enemy. “What will people say if I am honest in my Covid-19 journal?” Just imagine I succumbed to that fear and never started writing it! Perhaps nobody would miss it, but I would be poorer. And perhaps we fear because we see the walls and not the GAP! Is it possible? Perhaps we fear because we hear the words, but not the silence!

What I am suggesting, is that all fear (that undefined force) like “what will people say and think” may be founded in a basic fear of death. I am not sure about this and it may be nonsense. I am probably stretching things. (But I would still like to know what you think – leave a comment below.)  This is where Michael Olowu’s posts become valuable – he motivates me to overcome the fear created by my comfort zones!

The point is, overcoming this fear of what others may think (IF they think at all), is a fight in my own mind. Overcoming it made my life more worthwhile. I (try to) live in the GAP. I enjoy the freedom of the GAP. I appreciate the opportunity of the GAP.

I am battling to express my thoughts and my example may be a bad one, but in essence I am trying to say:  Life is always in the GAP and we must live it with gusto so we can die without regrets.  A friend once said to me: “If I knew when I am going to die, I will spend my money in such a way that my death and a zero bank balance happens at the same time.” That is what I am trying to say – I would love to have spend all my life when I die! Not some stuff hanging on the wall, so to speak.

We can get so busy with life, that we forget to live! We can be so involved with the words and the walls and the stress and the activity, that we reach the end and realise: “I never lived!” How sad that would be! If I could dance, I would grab a woman in a red dress and black high heals and do a Tango now! (Thinking of Al Pacino and Scent of a Woman).

We live in the GAP. And I wonder if I can then say “we exist in the words, the busy-ness, the stress and when we keep ourselves busy with the walls, but we LIVE in the silence and the space between the walls?” We exist when we succumb to our fears, we live when we break free from our fears?

The wise author of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 said that there are seasons in our lives. Sometimes we should build walls, sometimes we should break them down. Sometimes we must sow, sometimes we must harvest. We cannot break down a wall unless we have built it first. We cannot harvest without sowing. We must live in the season of our lives (the GAP?). But we must LIVE. We must gratefully embrace the season, because each season will lead to another. We should not fight the seasons. Fighting seasons will not change anything, we will just not be ready for the next season! Perhaps there is a progression in the seasons. Perhaps one season prepares us for the next. Then one season is not better or worse than the other. Perhaps just easier or more difficult. And remember, each season has a purpose!

Seasons of our lives

Faded Pictures on the Wall. Today they are wonderful Moms.

When I try to understand the seasons, I think of my children. There is a season of expecting and looking ahead. There is a season of a newborn, of a todler, right through to becoming a grandparent and experiencing these seasons on a higher plane. You cannot wish these seasons over, you cannot bring them back. Each season flies by like the wink of an eye. You better enjoy them while they last, because quicker than you think, they will be faded photographs against the wall!

We must be aware and live in the Present, it is all we have. Perhaps that is what the GAP is – the Present.  You can only make memories in the present! And the present is like a coin. You can spend it any way you like, but you can only spend it once.

When it is time to cry, cry. When it is time to be joyous, be joyous. Now is a time to refrain from embracing. When the time comes again to embrace – do it! Live. Every day. As much as you can. While you can. Fill the GAPS with LIFE. Do the Tango!

Time is precious. Appreciate it.

LIVE. LOVE. LEAVE A LEGACY!

Seasons

 

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