Thursday, December 31, 2009

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin' ...

As the year rolls to a close, that Steve Miller song is what keeps playing in my head.

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future

I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirit carry me
I want to fly like an eagle
Till I'm free
Oh, Lord, through the revolution

Feed the babies
Who don't have enough to eat
Shoe the children
With no shoes on their feet
House the people
Livin' in the street
Oh, oh, there's a solution

I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirit carry me
I want to fly like an eagle
Till I'm free
Fly through the revolution

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future

Time has been slipping away from me for months now. And tonight, another year will turn, and time will continue to slip into the future. I know I am not the only one who wishes I could slow it down or stop it on occasion.

For the most part, 2009 was a stellar year for me. It was the year that I married the love of my life, and the year that I was handed the most important project of my career. It was the year that I met Mimi, Fran, Paul, and PJ!

It was the year I flew like an eagle.

I also know that 2009 was awful for many people. My friend Terri-Lynn died, as did Roseann, and my friends Sharon and Joe from church. I continue to grieve with and for Kathy in the loss of her husband and for the families of my friends who had to face the holidays without those they loved. I know a lot of people who are out of work, battling illnesses, or dealing with difficult family issues. My prayer list is longer than it's ever been.

So, in the midst of my overly busy life, I try to remember to be grateful for all the blessings I have. A loving husband. Healthy, happy kids. Bouncy dog. Work I really enjoy (even if there has been too much of it lately!). Wonderful friends. Two faith communities to sustain me.

New Year's Eve is a great time to reflect on all those blessings. And, despite the cliche attached to New Year's resolutions, it is also a time to think about things done and left undone, and to consider the call to amendment of life.

I am wary of New Year's resolutions. I do not like to fail, and they seem like invitations to failure. It's not as if I need another thing for which I will feel the need to beat myself up. (Believe me, that list is already long enough...)

So, for over 20 years, I have made only one resolution, and it's always the same: I resolve not to feed marshmallows to alligators.

I am pleased to report that I have been very successful in keeping this resolution. In a life where I have too often disappointed myself and those who love me, I needed to be able to say that there is ONE resolution I have observed to the letter.

This year, however, I'm thinking about making some changes to my life. I don't want to make resolutions here--I have learned the hard way that trying to force myself to do hard things by making public commitments is not the way to go.

But I am thinking about how I want to live. And praying. Mostly for a little quiet and stillness. For more time with those I love. For the grace to appreciate what I have, while I have it. For the courage and discipline to live my convictions.

As the curtains fall on 2009, here is my prayer for you: May you and yours truly enjoy the precious gift of time this year. May you recognize that the future--like the Kingdom of God-- is already-but-not-yet here.

Grab it and fly.