“You’ve got all the time in the world.”
I used to hear that during many soccer games in my youth. My coach for multiple years, Coach Fagg, would yell it from the sidelines. He said this to help his players know that they could take their time in dribbling down the field or passing the ball to a teammate. I can recall hearing it and thinking “ok, breathe, you’ve got this.”
However, I learned that players eventually catch up to you as you are dribbling the ball. Similarly, as I grew up, I learned that I don’t have all of the time in the world. I have seen this as friends have died too young. I have lived this in times when there is too much to do and not enough time in the day.
As I write this blog, I am in the fourth week of my six week paternity leave at First Christian Church, Colorado Springs (www.FirstChristianCOS.org).
I have been given the gift of time for which I am eternally grateful. Yet, I realize that not everyone gets such a gift.
I was able to be fully present with my wife as we welcomed our second son into the world. I have been able to take our older son to fun events from educational adventures to multiple hours at an indoor bounce house extravaganza (truly the best $8 ever spent) and join him in breaking out into dance at all hours of the day. I have been able to be fully present as a father to our younger son as he has changed drastically over these first four weeks.
Sometimes, it seems as if we have all of the time in the world. I am thankful for an employer and a church community that values such a sacred time. At times, I struggle with being a human being as opposed to a human doing. In other words, I focused too much of my attention on my to do list instead of being who I need to be for those around me. Perhaps, you have that struggle too.
In ministry, we talk a lot about a ministry of presence. First Christian Church, Colorado Springs enabled me to be a parent of presence as well. It is my hope and prayer that more employers will give this sacred time to their employees. Further, may we push our government officials to make this sacred time into law because we don’t have all the time in the world, too many of us focus on being human doings as opposed to human beings, and not enough parents get the opportunity to be fully present with their children.
May all of us have the opportunity to be fully present with our family members, spend multiple hours at an indoor bounce house extravaganza, and hold babies that still have that “new baby smell.”
May all of us have the opportunity to break out into dancing without a care in the world of who was watching because, at that moment, we have all of the time in the world.
Jonathan Hall is the senior pastor at First Christian Church, Colorado Springs. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and across a variety of social platforms as JonathanBHall.