No More Multitasking

I recently came across a book titled 365 Ways to Save Time with Kids. The idiocy of this idea prompted me to substitute a more honest title: "How to Accelerate Your Kids’ Lives and Spend Less Time with Them Every Single Day."

What we usually mean when we say "save time" in our culture is "get more stuff done." Busy yet responsible parents are supposed to "make time" for their kids. But it often seems that my 2- and 5-year-old daughters make time for me. When they kneel wide-eyed on the sidewalk over an anthill, or chase lightning bugs in the cool lull between dusk and dark, or quietly monitor a robin sitting on its eggs in the crook of an elm tree, they make time for me. They pull me out of my ultra-compartmentalized productive time into an unmeasured creative time, which manifests the sanctity of nature’s relatedness—of God’s immense, delicate creation.

This is an example of what Dorothy Bass, in Receiving the Day: Christian Practices for Opening the Gift of Time, might call the fullness of God’s time. In an intricate weave of social analysis, church history, biblical exegesis, poetry, and personal narrative, she explores the complex problem and promise of time in modern culture through the lens of the Christian faith. "Time resonates with meaning," she writes. The book then explores various Christian "practices" that will enable readers to re-imagine time in their lives as a process of meaning rather the product of corporate marketeers.

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Sojourners Magazine March-April 2000
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