Feeling the pressure of several tasks this week, I have a drumbeat of “deadine, deadline, deadline” in my head. When a word keeps entering my consciousness, sometimes it helps to learn more about it. The Free Dictionary Online offers this definition: “A boundary line in a prison that prisoners can cross only at the risk of being shot.”
Deadline does have ominous origins. For me, who holds the figurative guns? For some tasks, the deadline comes from the person to whom I promise a finished project by a certain time. Sometimes, the season pulls the trigger. Just before winter in Anchorage, outdoor chores like bringing in begonias and changing to snow tires must be finished very soon.
James 1:2-4 says, “My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance; and let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing.”
Instead of hearing the drumbeat of deadlines, I need to re-imagine them as lifelines, challenges which, when met, will bring me closer to God.
This message is adapted from “Deadline, deadline, deadline,” written by Phyllis Rude for the Women of the ELCA blog. Today we remember James, the apostle. Do you enjoy these free Daily Grace messages? If so, donate now to further the ministry.