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Summary: Fifth and final in series Slowing Down. This message looks at the illusions and distortions we hold regarding the use of our time and how they keep us from being available.

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Time-lies

Slowing Down, part 5

Wildwind Community Church

David Flowers

November 8, 2008

Today we’re in the last message in our series called Slowing Down. Last week I gave you five specific ways you can slow down your life. Today I want to talk to you not about your schedule but about your attitude towards time – what I want to call your “time-lies.”

Have you ever said, “I don’t have time”? Most of us tend to approach time them from an attitude of scarcity. “I only have so much time and my time is currently used up doing X and Y, therefore I do not have time for Z.” The problem is that this statement is false. Let me show you.

Have you ever had a lot going on in your life, when suddenly there is a crisis in your family? Like someone dies, or someone has a serious heart attack and has to have surgery, or a crime is committed against somebody. When your mom calls to tell you your dad may be dying, do you tell her you don’t have time to come to the hospital? Ever? Of course not. Somehow, no matter what it takes, you’ll be there. You find a way. And you always can when you need to.

The truth is that we can always find time (this applies to money as well) when not doing so will produce a consequence we don’t want to deal with. The truth is that we can always find time when not doing so will produce a consequence we don’t want to deal with. The truth is that we can always find time when not doing so will produce a consequence we don’t want to deal with.

The truth. The truth. The truth is that we always can find time when not doing so will produce a consequence we don’t want to deal with.

We know this is the truth because we have experienced how it works – we have said we didn’t have time for one more thing and then figured out a way to deal with a crisis that popped up in our life. Or we have said we didn’t have a single second left in our day for something, but then frittered away a few hours on the Internet. So we begin with the truth. The truth is that we can always find time when not doing so will produce a consequence we don’t want to deal with.

Some more truth is that it’s not about how much time we have. It’s about what we decide to do with it. It’s about how we use what we are given. That’s truth. Do you think we’d be better off in using our time according to the truth, or according to the fantasies we continually feed ourselves? When it comes to how we use our time, I call these time-lies. The big question for tonight isn’t whether we believe time-lies because most of us do, the question is what will we do with our time-lies starting now?

A few months ago I was at a conference when suddenly a phrase popped into my head that I have not been able to get rid of ever since. Here it is:

Wildwind is a community of people learning to find, face, and follow the truth.

Would you say that with me?

I’ve had you do this before, but let’s do it again because it’s fun. Let’s take stock of all the problems and difficulties, perhaps even disasters, we’ve encountered in our lives because we refused to get into a position to find, face, or follow the truth. What problems are you dealing with right now because of that refusal?

Let’s look at how this works in real life, because finding, facing, and following truth are each difficult, and they get harder as you go. Facing the truth is harder than finding it, and following the truth is harder than facing it.

Let’s say you are a person who is addicted to alcohol. For a long time you lie to yourself, telling yourself you could stop drinking if you wanted to, you just don’t want to. You keep yourself in the dark about what the reality is. You really don’t know the truth of the matter. You have not yet “found” it.

But after a while your friends and family start making comments about it – both direct and indirect. But you tune it out. You have found the truth – it’s right there in the statements of people who love you – but you refuse to face it. You are constantly defensive, constantly seeking to avoid a situation or person that might pressure you to face the truth about your problem. You blame others. You complain about being judged unfairly. You protest that this is your business. You have found the truth, but you have not faced it.

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