Summary: As we move into the "Living with Covid" stage in Nova Scotia felt it was time to remind people why we are here.
Resetting the TimeLine Intro
If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
'Til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you.
That is the opening verse of “Time in a bottle”, which is the title of one of my favourite songs. If you are old, you might remember it as a Jim Croce song and album from 1973.
But the reality is that we can’t save time in a bottle. We can’t put time in a bottle or in a bank, and regardless of what people say, while you can waste time, you can’t save time. At midnight today will be gone.
And time confounds people. We can’t understand why it passes so slow sometimes or flies by other times. Dr. Suess wrote, “How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?”
And Einstein is said to have summed up his theory of relativity by saying “Sitting with a pretty girl for an hour seems but a minute; sitting on a hot stove for a minute seems an hour.”
And I’m often reminded of the truth of Andy Rooney’s statement when he said, “I’ve learned that life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.”
These past eighteen months we’ve seen time disrupted. Time seems all out of whack. When was it that we were on a real vacation? How long have we been wearing masks? When was the last time things felt. . .normal?
Weddings and funerals have been delayed, birthday parties postponed, and the absence of family at holiday gatherings has been explained away and excused with the words, “next year it will be different.” But we said that last Thanksgiving as well.
Back in the summer, the province held out the hope of “Phase Five”, or “living with COVID” as Dr. Strang called it. But apparently, COVID had other plans.
Our theme for the next few weeks is “Resetting the Timeline”, and it’s not a nod to getting back to normal, it is a call to fulfilling the vision that God has given us. Because, regardless of all that has changed in the past eighteen months, God has not changed his mind about his plans for Cornerstone.
According to Collins’ English Dictionary, “A timeline is a visual representation of a sequence of events, especially historical events.”
So, you could have a personal timeline, which might show your date of birth, when you began school, when you graduated from High School, when You graduated from university, when you were married, when you children were born, when you retired and eventually when you died.
If you go online, you can find biblical timelines, and historical timelines from any number of different civilizations and cultures.
Cornerstone has a timeline. It would show that Angela and I were called to start a new Wesleyan Church in Bedford in March 1994, while we were still pastoring in Australia.
It would show how we moved here in August 1994, began our first small groups in January 1995, had our first worship service in April 1995 at the Lebrun centre in Bedford. That we moved to the Empire Theatre in September 1996 and moved back to the Lebrun centre in January 2002. In 2004, we changed our name from Bedford Community Church to Cornerstone Wesleyan church and we moved into our first building in November 2005.
Here is where we started our second service in September 2008. In January 2019 we announced our dream of a second location and began our partnership with a small village in Sierra Leone. And then we saw part of that dream fulfilled when we moved into our second location in October 2020.
And you could fill in all the blanks between those dates, with salvations, baptisms, weddings and funerals. When staff came and when staff moved on.
And then the timeline seemed to be disrupted in March 2020.
In the 1985 classic Back to the Future Doc Brown warned Marty McFly about the dangers of messing with the spacetime continuum. But in reality, the spacetime continuum doesn’t have anything to do with time travel. It was just a cool way to describe, what others have called the Butterfly Effect, that changes that might be made in the past could impact the present.
If you could travel back 100 years in time and while you were there, your actions prevented your grandparents from meeting, there would be no you. Or if your actions resulted in the person who invented time travel not inventing time travel, you’d be stuck.