I have that song by Pete Seeger/The Byrds stuck in my head today:
“To everything (turn, turn, turn)
There is a season (turn, turn, turn)
And a time to every purpose under heaven…”
Now, if you’re churchy, or maybe even if you’re not, you know the lyrics come from the book of Ecclesiastes. The Teacher is writing about how life is cyclical, how there’s nothing new under the sun, how things come and go. Life is meaningless, maybe, except for getting a good job, having a good spouse, living a good life, obeying a good God. We live by seasons. Things change all the time, and yet, millions of people go through the same things every day.
* * *
Right now, Sunday, I am sitting in a Barnes and Noble procrastinating by writing a blog post. In other parts of my world…
*Teacher Dave ran a 5k this morning.
*Bill and Shannon are waiting for their son, their second child, to be born.
*Aida and Kazuki, after her water broke, are waiting for labor to start so their first child can be born.
*Erica just defended her senior honors thesis on Wednesday and is waiting to graduate so she can get on with it and start law school.
*David and Nicole are getting ready to get married in two months.
*Greg and Mary Jane just became grandparents a couple of weeks ago.
*Katie remembers that 13 years ago today her mom went to be with the Lord.
*Steph and Hannah are still remembering their dads, both lost to cancer.
*My mom has some sort of weird swelling in her legs.
*Chris (short for Christine) is at her son’s house with her children after her husband died Friday night.
*Dozens more of us are trying to get work done, thinking about our futures, practicing Sabbath, taking out the trash, making dinner, watching kids grow up.
* * * *
“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…”
* * * *
And once again I find myself in the strange in-between, on the verge of something new, something good. Waiting for whatever comes my way, trying to figure out where I’m going from here. Not a bad thing. I know I’ve been here before and will be here again, and so have so many people whose wisdom I am trying to harvest a stalk at a time. In the meantime, I am trying to enjoy this, even though the work is hard, even though I’ve hit a wall where my brain doesn’t want to work anymore. (I keep trying to tell it we’ve got three more months of this. I don’t think it gets it yet.)
And, as another good song puts it,
“Summer and winter and springtime and harvest
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love
Great is Thy faithfulness, great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me.”