Words of Hope: Outside of Time
My Dad left me a lengthy voicemail before he died. I waited to listen to it for a few weeks after he passed, waiting for a time I really needed to hear his voice. One day, I was ready to listen, so I pressed play – waiting with anticipation to hear his voice again. I listened, but the message was only background noise from an accidental call. At first, I felt like I was in a dark tunnel, I felt alone, and thoughts of frustration came to mind. Then, I immediately felt light and joy as a thought came to mind. This moment was intentional. My Dad is not on that voice message. My Dad is more alive than he has ever been. He is with God. I realized that the preserved voice of my Dad on the voicemail was an easy thing to let go of because that relic of Dad held in time is only a dim shadow of the past.
When I start down the path of, “Woe is me, no more Dad at Christmas, no more Dad on my voicemail, no more holding Dad’s hand, no more asking for Dad’s wise advice,” I end up discouraged. But I am filled with hope when I remember eternity and time are much different from my finite understanding. This understanding doesn’t mean that I will never feel grief or even that I shouldn’t grieve. It means that God is present during that pain and that deeper meaning can be found.
Our former National Poet Laureate, Mary Oliver writes, “I look upon time as no more than an idea.” This voice message moment was a reminder for me that God is outside of time. This realization removes the shackles of living life in retrospect or being afraid of what comes next. I can live right now knowing that Dad’s voice is with me, that God’s voice is with me, and eternity is now.
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, He has put eternity into man’s heart.” – Ecclesiastes 3:11