A remarkable thing happened last week. Both of our watches died! Both batteries gave out, leaving our wrists naked. If you know me, that’s a big deal. I’m a wristwatch guy. I’ve always worn a wrist-watch (oh, for a time I tried pocket watches but they were too bulky). I like (obsess?) about knowing what time it is now and when things should start and end. If you go into my office, you will see several clocks strategically placed in the room so that I can see them easily. When the top of the hour is about to arrive, I like to wind up most meetings to get ready for the next one. It helps now that my iPhone serves as a watch (and alarm clock) as well.
The French community in which we lives cares little for my kind of punctuality. Worship begins sometime after 10:30 or whenever the power point and musicians are ready. Worship ends when it ends, sometimes an hour, an hour and fifteen minutes or an hour and a half. It just depends on the day and no one worries (except me with my watch).
Now we are timeless (no pun intended). We wake when we wake up and go to sleep when we are tired. Oh, the car and the iPad have clocks, but they matter little to us now. We have no appointments nor pressing schedule. I write until I need more coffee. We eat when we are hungry. We are paying attention to other signals and rhythms.
I’m sure I will not keep this up when I return to pastoral life. But its kind of freeing for now!