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From our Canon Chaplain

Dear Friends and Colleagues.

At the New Year I am reminded once more that we exist within the boundaries of time and space - a favourite theme of mine. The number 2019 is a measure of time and a staging post in our journey through that time. It is difficult not to think of past, present and future in light of this 'procession.' A good friend mine was wont to say at the end of a day. "Ah well, that's another day nearer the pension and the grave.' The inevitability of the passage of time is something that I tend to deny in my daily life and can often pull me up with a start when I am forced to confront it.

What I find especially interesting and somewhat scary is the experience of time seeming to pass ever more quickly as I age.

There is a mathematical explanation for this in that, as I age, each year of my life is a smaller and smaller fraction of the whole. When I was 5 the year was a fifth of my whole life - now it is an 80th part ! I suppose that in some subtle way my mind does this calculation, resulting in my sense of time's brevity.

 In the face of all this I have two ' tools,' acquired over the years, that can add value and depth to the meaning of time as I experience it from day to day - both are profoundly spiritual.
                                    The practice of living 'one day at a time is expressed beautifully in a Sanskrit proverb thus:-
                                    'Look to this day,
                                     For it is life,
                                     The very life of life.
                                     In its brief course lie all
                                     The realities and verities of existence,
                                     The bliss of growth,
                                     The splendour of action,
                                     The glory of power -
                                      For yesterday is but a dream
                                      And tomorrow is only a vision.
                                      But today, well lived,
                                      Makes every yesterday a dream
                                                 of happiness
                                      And every tomorrow a vision of hope.

                                       Look well, therefore, to this day.

The other 'tool' I have is my Christian understanding of living ' sub specie aeternitatis.'

Perhaps another way of putting this in more intimate language is the liturgical phrase that looks towards ' our long home.'  

If we are moving inexorably towards a destiny framed in space and time - then we are moving towards our HOME which describes our lives as 'changed, not ended.' A Divine Promise for all time and eternity.

Blessings on a New Year of Grace,
JOHN