Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Last Minute

“The Last Minute,” what would we do without it? If we are born with internal clocks, then mine must have been set 5 minutes late.

I have to admit that this is not coincidence but a bad habit, made worse by the fact that I try to cram as much as possible into any space of time. Leaving one place for another is something I find hard and typically I find myself rushing to do “just one more thing” before leaving.

Closely connected to this habit, is another; speeding. I didn’t think that I am a reckless driver, but shaving myself to the last minute meant that until recently, I usually drove under pressure.

A couple of months ago, after maintaining a clean driving record for many years, I got two speeding tickets within one month! I faced the reality that I needed to make some changes.
I made the decision to stop speeding; that I was no longer going to be a speeder. From then on, everything in my life adjusted to that decision. I calculated longer traveling times to get to places; added in a margin for unexpected delays—and began to arrive at my destinations, not just on time, but early.

I noticed an unexpected side effect of slowing down. I felt peaceful and relaxed; no more dashing into meetings last, scanning the room for an available seat. I liked the feeling of having time to spare.

At the same time Paul and I were reading, The Normal Christian Life, by Watchman Nee. Mr. Nee explained that based on Romans chapter 6, when Christ died, we were “in him,” being crucified “with him.” The book is about the difference between Christ’s death for the sins we committed in the past and our “sin nature“being crucified when Christ was crucified. The challenge was that while Mr. Nee’s theory lined up neatly with what Paul the apostle wrote at the beginning of his letter to the Romans chapter 6; we were confronted with a gap; the difference between what we read and our personal experience. We understood our need for grace for our sins, but we did not feel very dead to sins!

I discovered something from my new identity as a non-speeder that I believe has relevance to this puzzle. Stay tuned for my next post on this topic tomorrow.

Romans 6:5-7
If we have been united with him in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be rendered powerless, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—because anyone who has died has been freed from sin.

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