I’m Charmayne Hafen, a Colorado-based author of several elementary, middle-school, and young adult fiction novels.
Sometimes I think I’d like to live out life with the mindset of young wanderer but, I turned 50 this year, yes 50, and time seems to be crunching along faster and faster, as though I’m seated and antsy to be traveling the Cog Railway in haste to the cloud-shrouded top of Pike’s Peak.
It sometimes frightens me.
I glimpse strange and glorious scenery passing by outside my window, and small animals I have never been introduced to before. I have no vocabulary for what is going so quickly by me.
I want to slow down the days and appreciate what is.
This pre-election season in our global climate accompanied by a pandemic and never before experienced rioting in America has brought such suffering and yet, for me, so many God-given gifts. One of these is the gift of meaningful time.
Here, I am spending more time with my husband than I ever have in our 20 years of marriage. I’m discovering things about him I didn’t know. I have come to realize that his sometimes stern tone of voice is just a focused response, unintended to be harsh or even mean. He loves me so much more than I ever knew. He told me the other day that he would always rather be with me than alone.
Time spent is an investment in the future of a loving relationship. Time is our most precious commodity. If we spend our time with people that don’t support us or even tear us down, we are investing into a bottomless “whatever will be”, to our own detriment.
We tend to think animals live in the present, that they don’t have a future and don’t have a past. But we know that’s not true. They can use tools to fix something for the future. In a Swiss zoo, orangutans had a skylight in their cage and dismantled the whole thing. That way they could spend summer nights on the roof of their building. Then in the morning before the caretakers came back, they would go back in the cage and put the skylight precisely back together. So no one ever noticed. On a nice summer night, it was better to be on the roof than inside the cage.Steve Paulson on Primatologist and author, Frans de Waal, via Nautilus; Empathy, Morality, Community, Culture—Apes Have It All
Time is more precious than any amount of money.
To enjoy money there must be time.
To enjoy my calling to write, I must prioritize it and take the time to write.
In my middle-grade Trilogy, The Land of Twilight offers readers a time and space altered dimension. Sam and Lorna occasionally get lost between what matters and what is and what they wish could be. But, they are growing up and their inquisitive minds begin to discover answers to replace their usual acceptance of “whatever”.
In the most recent third book of my Land Of Twilight trilogy, Trouble In Twilight, my seventh-grade characters, Lorna and Sam, travel through time to learn how to save the dying Land Of Twilight. As they pay a visit to ancient Greece and the city of Nazareth, the friends grapple with what it means to have faith as well as faith in whom or in what you put your faith.
It takes the passing of time to reach different conclusions about faith. God is gracious and gives us this time.
I’ve heard, and I believe that God lives outside of time. He already sees our sanctified, perfected selves. We are the blind ones. We’re stuck in a timeline where living only for today or living in the past or even the future can be dangerous if we don’t have the cogs on the wheels to grip the cogs of the railroad machinery.
Ignoring the importance of time well-placed, this gift we’ve been offered to spend on our most important relationships can take our focus off of the One who calls us “holy” or set apart for a special relationship with our Creator.
If we focused more on who He says we are, that He made us for the purposes designed within our make up, and for Him, we might be free to live at last.
I pray I’ll maintain this investment of time with my husband even after things “go back to normal”, whatever that is compared to now. I also pray I will continue to slow down and take time with those I love and that God places in front of me.
Time is a precious gift to be given with full focus and care.
Charmayne Hafen co-owns and manages a petroleum testing company with her husband. Besides this dimension, she sets the pace for each day with her morning rituals of listening to music, painting and art, prayer, and writing.