We’re writing to you on day 5 (but who’s counting?) of our household’s quarantine, which we’re calling Covid 2022 part 2 déjà vu. (May this be an encouragement for everyone to get those bivalent boosters!) We were disappointed to be homebound after two joyful in-person Sundays, but there’s a humility this virus keeps teaching us, isn’t there? (Thankfully, our girls are feeling okay, and the grown-ups remain negative so far, fingers crossed).
As we know, so much of life and growth is non-linear… two steps forward, one step back. And it seems that moving gracefully into this not-quite-“post”-pandemic season is less of a clear-cut reopening and more of a gentle (and at times, frustrating) cha-cha-cha. I suppose we’re always dancing together through the uncertainty of our lives.
For the month of October, we’ve selected a worship theme that we hope will illuminate our day-to-day struggles and longings within the metaphysical big-picture. We’re calling it, “The Fullness of Time,” an oft-used Biblical phrase that speaks to a transcendent reality both within and beyond time.
The ancient Greeks had two distinct words for time: chronos and kairos. Chronos is where we tend to reside, within the ticking clock of the chronological: the world of calendars and schedules, to-do lists and quarantines, the furious march of minutes. Chronos is time to be measured and managed, and perhaps bewildered by (that whole “the days are long but the years are short” paradox).
Then there is Kairos. Kairos is time out of time, the boundless expanse of eternity. When the glory of creation seems to spill out of itself in excessive beauty, we catch a glimpse of kairos time: a mountain top sunrise, the thrill of creative flow, a hand slipped into yours. Kairos can also show up in the slow-motion whirl of a crisis that clarifies our values.
Theologically, kairos also means the right or decisive moment, the opportune window for action. During apartheid in South Africa in the 1980s, a group of Black theologians co-authored The Kairos Document, calling on the divided church in a particular moment to repent, to wake up, and to act for liberation. I wonder what Kairos moments we might be called to in this season of life together?
It’s our hope and prayer that what we do together as a faith community isn’t just “one more thing” (or ten!) to fit in our schedules, but rather windows into kairos time that just might transform us.
See you soon (when the time is right!),
Kit & Nate