Sr. Pamela Marie Buganski
“God is always talking to me when I am in Guatemala.”
This passage from Ecclesiastes continues to stay with me. In the past, I have read these verses about time as if they were an explanation of the things that happen to us all in life. As a human being, building and tearing down, war and peace happen. Like, these are facts of life. Also, I have read these verses in regard to times that had already happened. For example, in seeking healing after the death of a loved one, I might have turned to the verse "There is a time for mourning" as a source of consolation for a death that had occurred days or weeks or months before. In these days, I am reading the passage and experiencing the time that is referenced as time of the present. Again, what happens each moment of each day is beyond my control. I may think that I am controlling time, but in reality, I cannot. How I think about time affects my day and my relationship with the God of my day. The times that are referenced in the passage are times of the present, each tme and each event in time is a gift from God. So, I approach time with a sense of joyful and trusting expectation as well as with a sense of gratitude. In particular, I could be anxious about ever learning the Spanish language. I might want to measure what I have learned each day and perhaps yield to discouragement. But really, if I am living in the present moment, of the present gift of God, and it is of God, I will in fact learn. My emotion is one of gratitude and trust, not of fear.
Hola! This is my third day in Antigua. It is a lovely city. My friends Brena and Lucy have walked and talked with me for two days. Right now, I am wandering on my own.
God has not failed to speak to me. Each day He-She seems to present a theme that I ponder. Today´s theme sent me to Ecclesiastes chapter 3 verses 1-8. There is a time for everything under the sun. I was led to this passage because of my encounters with time yesterday. First of all, I overslept (not yet having an alarm clock) so we never got in our morning walk around the city. Then, I had scheduled to walk with Brenda and Lucy at 3:00 and they came at 3:30. As we walked, it thundered and threatened rain. It only began to pour and the streets ran like rivers after we were far away from home; not our timing.
What was new to me in reflecting on the day and on the passage was my new understanding that I am not in control of time. Surely that has been the message all along, but I have unconsciously read it with the mindset that I set the time for laughter and mourning, for birth and death, for peace. Think about it. No one can time he natural birth of a newborn. Rather, the birth occurs and we then we note the time. I do not awaken with a determined schedule to laugh at 2:11 in the afternoon. Rather, laughter is spontaneous and unplanned. This new awareness allows greater freedom for God to enter my daily life. It is being open to God, to goodness, and to all.
Sr. Pam Buganski
Sr. Pam joined SewHope as our first American Project Coordinator in 2012