It’s AUGUST. It’s HOT. Here in Washington DC, the air is like sticky soup. August is when people get out of town or they hibernate in the air conditioning or by the pool. The roads clear out. The sky is white. There’s hardly a breeze. Some leaves just give up, turn brown and fall off their trees. Flowers pant. Everything that’s outside wilts. You know the phrase “slow as molasses”? Molasses comes to mind when you’re in DC in August.
Our religious communities are meant to be countercultural. So, when our culture says, keep going as fast as ever, even when the world is saying SLOW DOWN ITS MOLASSES OUT THERE, our faith asks if perhaps we want to be more in step with what the earth is telling us than what our productivity-addicted society might be saying. There is a season for getting stuff done. It’s called Autumn, when school bells ring and the air is crisp and things need organizing before winter.
Your church might be saying, we gotta figure out what we’re up to! Time is flying by post-pandemic-lockdown, and we aren’t even sure what we’re about these days! Can I suggest that you stay in Molasses time? It’s an August way of being. It’s the time where you might sit by a pond and drag your toes through the water, letting whatever comes to mind come on in. It’s a time when you invite your loved ones over when the sun gets low, just to laugh and eat and not care what the clock says. It’s a time when you give a little extra care when you see it’s needed, whether that’s water to wilting flowers or cupcakes to a friend who’s feeling down. It’s a time when you get out of town, because all your routines are just your inventions anyway and it’s a good time to remember there are lots of ways to live.
You’re an earthly creature and this little essay is meant to remind you that your body and your spirit and the world around you are always communicating with you. Listen to them. We are still in Molasses Time. There will be plenty of time to rush towards solutions or make grand plans or strive towards goals. That time is not now. Breathe. Eat. Laugh. Get out of town. We’ll see you soon.