I’ve been studying a lot about time recently – what it is, how it works, and how it relates to space. One thing I have discovered is that time can be perceived as what happens between 2 points in our life, as if through a series of snapshots. For instance, if there were a photograph taken of every moment of my life – it would be a complete description of how I used my time here on earth.
Every evening when I say my personal prayers, I must account for what I have done or not done that day, or how I have used my time. I am in essence presenting my snapshots to God, on that day’s page in what will eventually be the book of my life.
What kind of snapshots, if my moments were frozen in time, will He see? What will my day page consist of? I do have control over this offering and it begins as my alarm goes off each morning.
My Father in Heaven will see what my first priority is as my eyes open and my consciousness becomes aware of the day’s responsibilities. Will he see me fall out of bed and onto my knees in prayer? Will that be my very first snapshot of the day? That is my goal.
In that morning prayer I’m sure I will ask for help in finding people to serve, in prioritizing scripture study and for sensitivity to the promptings of the Spirit, and the faith to act upon them.
Then, I must get off my knees and pursue those goals.
As I travel through that day’s journey, what snapshots are being taken of me? What pictures will make up my day page when I account for that time in my evening prayers?
Will there be pictures of me browsing social media – for hours? Will there be pictures of me putting things into my body that are harmful? Will there be snapshot, after snapshot, after snapshot of me watching TV, ignoring the to-do list with visiting teaching written at the top? Will He see me being impatient with my children? Being rude to my spouse? Looking at my phone every 10 seconds as I “read” my scriptures?
This new visual description of time as being a recorded series of snapshots, has helped me keep an eternal perspective. I know I cannot pause time, pursue my own pleasures, and then resume the pictures when I feel I’m ready to continue. My goal is to be proactive in determining what my day page will look like in ALL its parts. I have the control. I determine what my Father will see. In a sense, I pose for each and every picture.
Each night, I present my snapshots on my day’s page as a record of how I used my Father’s precious gift of agency – and time. My desire is for that record to be a gift – for Him.
I want Him to see me searching for people to serve and acting on promptings I am given. I want Him to see me immersed in my scriptures and in thought as I ponder them. I want Him to see many, many pictures of me praying, serving, learning and loving.
This is a lofty goal, to be sure, and I am quite aware that I am just a typical human with the weaknesses and faults that come with mortality. I know that no day will be perfect. There was only one perfect person. I am well aware that each day there will be pictures of things I could be doing better. Many of them! So, too often, my day page will be full of snapshots I would rather blot out.
This is where my tremendous need and gratitude for the Savior comes in!
Jesus Christ has provided the way for every single unwanted, unworthy snapshot of mine to be erased from my daily page. Permanently. If I repent sincerely, not even a trace or a shadow will remain. How I love my Savior for that loving, tremendous gift!
I must try to take advantage of the gift of the Atonement continuously. Several times throughout every day I hope to find myself repenting. In my evening prayers I will plead for help to improve. Weekly, during the sacrament I will implore my God for forgiveness and thank my Savior for the gift and ability to try again!
Then every morning, with gratitude, my eyes will open to a new, clean, blank page, on which a new set of pictures will be taken. How grateful I am for the blessed gift of second chances!
At the end of my life, I visualize my day pages being organized into a book. My life book. At my life’s conclusion, I will in effect present that book to my Savior on the day I am to be judged. What will He see as he looks through its pages? What will I have become?
I hope He will see snapshots of effort. Pictures of trying. And many, many blank spots where I have applied His Holy Atonement. As He comes to the end of my book, I hope He will know that I have tried to become more like Him. I hope he will find that my efforts, my goals, my time and my desires – were all for Him, that all the happiness that was contained in the book was because of Him, and that He was the center of every page.
If this is to be my life’s conclusion, I have much yet to write in my book so it has the ending I desire. I am illustrating it with every step I walk, through every hour of every day I live. I hope that as these pages and chapters become my life’s story, that my Father in Heaven will find that I have become something more. Someone good. I hope I will have become like my Savior.
I am so grateful for the gift of time, for eyes opening on new days, for blank pages, and most of all –
- A Visitor’s Guide to Watching General Conference at Temple Square – With or Without Tickets
- The Naked Truth