Thought for the Week

I CAN scarcely believe it - here we are at the beginning of February already. Where has the time gone? It seems no time at all since we were preparing for Christmas with excitement and anticipation. But we are already in the second month of 2012!

What is time? Oh, I don’t mean the seconds, minutes and hours - but what does time mean for us? I suspect that when things are going well time flies by without us even noticing. Not so when we’re waiting for results of a test, news of a sick friend or an impending family event etc - time seems to hang and drag its heels.

I heard a man tell the story of a little girl who asked her mum what it meant when it said in the Bible that something “came to pass.” Her mum explained that “it came to pass” was the Bible’s way of saying something “just happened.” Her Granny, however, had another take on that expression and she said that everything in life “comes - to pass”. Happy, exhilarating, sad and even scary things all “come - to pass”.

We all have things to look forward to one way or another. It’s six months to the 2012 Olympic Games and the official Countdown Clock in Trafalgar Square ticks away relentlessly reminding all how long it is until the games begin on July 27. Over the following weeks sportsmen and women will compete for Olympic medals and their times will certainly be important. We will all be on the edge of our seats when competition is close - especially if our favourite athlete is taking part.

Talking of times - we recently watched a downhill skiing competition on the terrifying Hahnenkamm course at Kitzbuhel in Austria. This course stretches the skiers to the limit and they hurtle down the mountain at breakneck speeds. Jumps up to 80 metres; steep slopes up to 85 per cent; less than two minutes to complete the stretch of 3.3 kilometres (over two miles); an altitude difference of 863 metres (about half a mile); and an average speed of 103 km/h - this is the most difficult ski piste in the world. And to get back to times - some competitors were separated by - not minutes or even seconds but hundredths of seconds! Imagine taking second place having been beaten by a measly four hundredths of a second! Time can be cruel.

When we watch sportsmen and women taking part we have to remember that although the actual event on the day may take a short time - it is actually the culmination of months, even years of hard practice and dedication which we should appreciate.

Be careful with your time and spend it wisely - remember, we can do nothing about yesterday but we can ruin today by worrying about tomorrow. Have a happy February!

Kathleen Strachan

Montrose Old and St Andrew’s Church