I wore my dad’s watch yesterday. In my rush to get out the door, I forgot to put on my typical digital one and didn’t want to be rude and checking my phone all the time for the time. So when I dropped my son off at papas house I went in my dad’s room to grab a watch. He collects antique watches so I knew he had spares, and I dress somewhat eclectic (7 years at art school makes you not care if you match).
Something happened though, wearing my dads watch. It was oddly empowering for two reasons.
One, my dad has always been my hero. He made the wishes on stars come true, he made my dreams filled with chocolate rivers and licorice trees. He is a constant stronghold in the storms this life passed my way, he has made my family, me, grow in leaps and bounds of faith. He was the maker of star wishes, and granter of sweeter dreams. And as his watch dangled on my wrist it felt like he was with me holding my hand. And let’s face it, everyone stands a little taller, feels a little braver, tries a little harder when their dad is holding their hand!
Secondly, it’s a wind up watch. I initially thought all his watches had dead batteries. When he came inside and I asked him if he had a watch I could wear (because I failed at finding one that works) he said sure and grabbed one out of the box I had been looking at. As I explained the battery was dead, he explained it’s an antique (duh dad) and had to be wound up. I was getting irritated, I was running behind and now would be winding a watch all day?! Turns out you only have to wind it once, and you have all the time you need for 24 hours! My heart slowed as I watched him wind it up, hearing it clicking the time away…oh how often I’ve clicked time away differently.
That was the empowering part: all the time I need for 24 hours, no more, no less.
I’m busy, I always have a huge to-do list, I am always going from one project to the next (often without slowing down, resulting in bruises with no origin). But this watch, my daddy’s watch…gave me just enough time for one day!
It got me thinking, reflecting on things I already knew. God doesn’t promise us unlimited time. He doesn’t promise only easy days, or things going according to my schedule. However, he does say there is a time for everything:
Ecclesiastes 3 (NLT)
“For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace...
…Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.”
So I conclude, stop trying to control time. Stop trying to add more hours to the day, or add more stuff to the hours. There are 24 hours in a day, and God has given us this perfect time to do what must truly be done (which for me means purposefully slowing down).
And the most beautiful thing of all is like the watch too big, literally holding my wrist and reminding me with every dangle that my dad is with me, our Heavenly Father is also with us. Everyday. Every minute. Every hard, trying, joyful, exhausted moment. God is walking with me, guiding my hand and controlling the minutes if I’d just let him.