The Essence of Time

By Fr. Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Ph.D.

A new year 2024 has dawned upon us. It is not unusual that at such a juncture we may ponder on the passage of time and find ourselves wondering how fast the years are going by. We look at the children around us and can’t help but think, “When did they grow so much!” Time moves past us and we seem to be always trying to keep up with it.

In the business world the dictum is that “money is of the essence” for the continuity and survival of a company. That is why we frequently also hear that “time is money” as business-people struggle to keep their companies alive and competitive. “Time is money” for business, because time moves on even as the owners have to sleep. Companies have to keep paying their bills even when the doors are shut. So, they can’t afford to lose any time. No wonder why many business-people lose a lot of sleep over time.

For us Christians, however, money is only a tool to use here on earth and we know very well that no one will take any of it with them in the end. Time, on the other hand, is of the essence, even for us, because time is a precious commodity when it comes to the survival and continuity of our life into eternity. Eternal life in the Kingdom of God is dependent on how we utilize this gift of time during our life on this earth.

There is an urgency in the words of Christ with regard to time and His Kingdom. He wants us to experience the Kingdom of God in the here and now because “the kingdom of God has come with power,” (Mark 9:1) “the kingdom of heaven is at hand,” (Matt. 4:17, Mark 1:15) “the Kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21)

We need to act timely, and use our time here on earth wisely, so that we may be able to also share of God’s Kingdom: “the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force.” (Matt. 11:12) We should not only spend our time for the enjoyment of earthly things, because all of these will eventually pass away; but the Kingdom of God remains for all time. The Kingdom of God is not a material existence of eating and drinking and reveling but rather, justice and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. (Rom. 14:17) Time given to us here on earth is of the essence for the inheritance of the Kingdom of God and our eternal enjoyment throughout all time.

Time has been sanctified by God by His entrance into our time through His birth as a human being and His life on earth in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. Since then, we have been participating in sacred time. Every year is a year of salvation and holiness. We have even been counting time in that way; we are now entering the year 2024 A.D. (Anno Domini) – the 2024th year of the Lord; time blessed by God!

All time is indeed a gift from the Lord. Let’s make sure we offer back to Him from His own gift of time. Let’s offer Him time in Thanksgiving, Praise, Glory and Honor. In other words, let’s begin to experience the joy of His Kingdom even in the here and now by sanctifying our time in His worship. All other joys of our life will be blessed and magnified by the power of His Holy Spirit as we connect with Him, as we enter into the experience of His Kingdom even in the here and now.

May your time in the New Year of the Lord 2024 be Holy, Joyous and Prosperous! May you have a Blessed time!

In Christ’s Love,

Fr. Panayiotis