Happy New Year, friends.
Turning a calendar page seems special. Not sure it is, but people attach import to it.
Chronos is closest to what we think of. It’s about turning calendar pages, watching clocks, putting events in an orderly format called a chronology. Or expressing our reality as something predictable that just keeps going and going, like the chronic condition of someone in our care.
But the Greeks also spoke of kairos. This was a measure of time based on meaning – on the rich moments that define all the other normal, chronological stuff and make it worth putting up with. A sports team on the verge of a championship might rally around the cry of, “Our time has come!” That doesn’t mean, “Oh, hey, it’s game day and the bus will be here in 20 minutes.” It means “Here is the moment that sums up all we’ve been doing and all we’ll hope for – who we are deep down.”
Filling up family medicine organizers for the week? Chronos.
The first time Tim saw Sophia Loren come out of the ocean in Boy On a Dolphin? Kairos all the way.
Seriously, though, our “Happy New Year” to you isn’t, “Have a nice page flip day!” It’s a prayer that your care giving has some rich kairos going on. Breakthrough moments where you understand and love those in your care with a whole new depth. Moments where they reach out of whatever shell might contain them and give you a blessing you won’t forget.
Moments where your heart knows that all of your moments – shiny, stinky or in between – have a sacred meaning and purpose that cannot go away.