Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Today, December 12, 2012, is the last repeating date for what the "experts" say will be about the next thousand years. That's assuming, of course, that recorded time will continue after the Mayan calendar runs out in another nine days.

Sometimes we fall into the fallacy of thinking that one day is pretty much like another. Today reminds us that that is simply not the case. Each day brings new opportunities, new possibilities, and new challenges. Life is a metaphorical chess game that starts over again every day. Like the proverbial nagging boss, it tells us that yesterday is over and done with—what have you done today? It reminds us that each passing moment is a gift—that's why they call it the present.

It is important, methinks, to keep all this in mind as we start each day. Whatever we think our schedules may hold in store for us, life itself will intrude around the cracks and nudge us in new and unexpected directions. The Gospel of Mark is a perfect example: every time Jesus makes a plan, someone or something intrudes, and things take an entirely different course. As the old adage goes, life is what happens while we are making other plans.

Some people, present company included, keep a running score in their head throughout the day. Did you pay a bill, mail a letter, text an encouraging word to a friend? Give yourself a pat on the back, and kick your score up a notch. Did someone come to you for help, and were you able to do something for them? Good for you. Your day has not been wasted.

And then, rather than counting sheep as you fall asleep at night, you might do a brief performance review of your day. What went right? What didn't? What lessons did the events of the day embody?

Well, most of us won't be around for the next repeating date in the calendar. But let's not frivol away the intervening days. Remember that the calendar itself is merely an historical accident, omitting the year zero, and based on a supposed historical event that probably took place six years before the Year One. In the final analysis, it's not how we label our days, but how we spend them that matters.


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