Readings: Psalm 90; Numbers 17:1-11; 2 Peter 3:1-8
This is now, beloved, the second letter I am writing to you; in them, I am trying to arouse your sincere intention by reminding you that you should remember the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets, and the commandment of your Lord and Savior spoken through your apostles. First of all you must understand this, that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and indulging their own lusts and saying, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since our ancestors died, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation!” They deliberately ignore this fact, that by the word of God heavens existed long ago and an earth was formed out of water and by means of water, through which the world of that time was deluged with water and perished. But by the same word the present heavens and earth have been reserved for fire, being kept until the day of judgement and destruction of the godless.
But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day. 2 Peter 3:1-8,NRSV
Time is tricky. She speeds by unnoticed when I am joyful, and drags her feet when I’m bored. At times, I’m acutely aware of her passing – birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, funerals, Christmas Eve services, and Easter Vigils. These mark her path through my life as the wrinkles on my face and grey in my hair reveal her mark on my physical body.
But time is slippery and doesn’t mark her path the same way in all cases. To a butterfly, my life span is unimaginably vast; to a redwood tree, my years are a leaf that skitters past in the wind – here and gone in little more than an instant.
Given God’s eternal nature, it’s no wonder that a thousand years is like a single day. But I’d be silly to ignore the first part of Peter’s verse: that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years. I may be blind to things that come and go in a heartbeat, but God has all the time in the world to see and love every single nuance and every single detail. There’s always time enough for God because time herself belongs to God.
Guide us, O God, on the way to Bethlehem. Amen.