Ordinary Time

I actually feel like writing for the first time in what feels like months.

It’s been a rough 6 weeks…8 weeks…12 weeks? I’m not sure even, really. And I say that not to be dramatic or seek anything other than your patience in my recognizing my own deep self-dissatisfaction, my complete lack of faith and trust, and my own foolish attempts at perfectionism.

I’m learning lots of things about myself in this Ordinary Time.

I found that phrase a few months ago … Ordinary Time. I was not raised in a theological tradition that valued or taught the Church Calendar. Words like “Pentecost” and “Advent” echoed occasionally, but never really stuck with me.

But these days I find myself more and more drawn to old and new liturgy, to discovering a religious rhythm to my days.

And so, as I’ve recently discovered, we are in Ordinary Time. It’s that seemingly eternal stretch between Pentecost (when the Spirit descended upon the disciples) and Advent (my most favorite of seasons, of sweet hope and anticipation and remembering). It’s Ordinary. The days grow much longer and then much shorter. My patience wanes.

I think this is a season of Ordinary Time for us much longer than just the stretch between April and December of 2011. I think this has been a season of resting, of stretching our new adult muscles and slowly unraveling and re-raveling the plans we’re making for the next phase of life.

We are aching for newness, for freedom, for different. And yet, we have so much to love and learn here. So we’re stuck – lingering in what feels like the twilight of this Ordinary Time, asking “what’s left?” with a hope-filled and slightly anxious glance at the future.

And I wonder if this is what the rest of life will be. The already-not yet of this Godward journey, never quite feeling satisfied with the way things are, but not yet ready for what’s to come because what is now is quite comfortable.

My favorite description of Ordinary Time is that is is a “time to celebrate the mystery of Christ in all its aspects.”

I wish I had the patience to do that … to truly celebrate the mystery of Christ, to rest in it, to really trust it. Because this Christ is a mystery to me still, and I hope He will always be until all things are new. But now, I’m struggling through this Ordinary Time. I’m wrestling with the mystery. And it’s anything but comfortable.





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