Notes from Jan

Soap and Time On My Hands

March 24, 2020


Remember when phrases like “I’m having the time of my life” meant you were having a really good time?   Stuck inside, we  can  feel more like we’re doing time, instead of  having the time of our lives.

But, in reality, we are experiencing both. How we view this time depends, in part,  on how we value time, which is finite for all of us. We know it’s more than numbers on our watches.  Our days are  made  of moments meant to add up to a meaningful  life, “until death do us part.”

These are character revealing moments.  And too many of us aren’t used to denying ourselves or delaying gratification. I speak from experience.

School’s out but learning need not cease.  If we’re willing to be taught, we can be home-schooled and come out wiser when Covid-19 is history.

We can mumble and mark time. On the other hand, we can choose to make whatever time’s on our hands count for Good, ours as well as the good of others.

A long time ago Moses sang this prayer, “Teach us to make the most of our time, so that we may grow in wisdom.”(Psalm 90:12 NLT)

When this pandemic has run its course, I hope I’ll still be around,(you,too) wiser and not just older.

It’s time for bed.   I sleep better and worry less, if I tuck myself in with a song, a prayer and  an assessment of my blessings.  In these days of learning to make-do or do without, I’m reminded  my blessings aren’t things. They have faces, which just may be one way I’m already wiser than I was not all that long ago.




















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  • Reply Dan Russ March 24, 2020 at 11:07 pm

    Jan, You are one of those blessed faces to so many of us. Sleep well.

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 25, 2020 at 10:41 am

      I’ll have to add that to my list of blessings tonight, Dan. One day we’ll see each other face to face and The Face we both love.

  • Reply Carol Herrick March 25, 2020 at 4:57 am

    Hi Jan, I pray for you daily. I am trying to use this time to reach out to friends and family by phone, email, etc. We are blessed by those we know and should try to be a blessing in return. Carol

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 25, 2020 at 10:43 am

      Thank you, dear Carol, for sending me this germ-free hug. Over your years at Gordon you blessed many through your kind and helpful ways. I’m not surprised you’re using this time to bless others. Thank you for your prayers.

  • Reply Anna March 25, 2020 at 8:39 am

    Amen Jan, thank you for faithfully encouraging us- I appreciate that time that you spend!!
    My anchoring verse is Psalm 46:10. Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.
    May it be so!!!!!

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 25, 2020 at 10:48 am

      What an important verse, considering this is a global pandemic. It’s never been all about us. I pray this turns our eyes to seek God and outward to “love our neighbors as we love ourselves.”

  • Reply Dale March 26, 2020 at 8:04 am

    Thanks Jan and sorry for the delay. I read it and thought about your words on the spot, but my spot moved and I have been fully engaged here at the medical school. As a doctor, “but not the kind that helps people,” I provide administrative and logistic support; plus lots of personal support for my colleagues in the trenches – war metaphors work well. Absolutely, all we have in life is our time (clocking ticking seems louder) and all we do with our time is spend it. Thanks for encouraging us to spend our time wisely as God would regard it.

    Blessings, Dale

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 26, 2020 at 11:46 am

      Yes, it is a war. I am grateful you are where you are, Dale, “for such a time as this.’

  • Reply wendy lane March 28, 2020 at 9:45 pm

    I’m sleeping better doing the same things you are Jan – and God is so faithful, isn’t He?! Truly we have more blessings than we can count – and it sure beats counting sheep 🙂 Love you and praying for you!

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