Today was a total waste of time — at least for most of the day.
A good friend texted me at 8:45 AM seeing if I wanted to grab breakfast. I was still in bed, so suggested meeting at 9:30 AM at a local place we both like. We met, ate, and talked for a long time. When I checked my watch, I realized it was almost 1:30 PM. Time flies when talking and catching up.
This was not on my schedule and was total waste of time — and exactly the right use of that time!
Sometimes, in the midst of being goal-driven and precisely scheduled, intentional total wastes of time are exactly what we need. Because wasting time is where relationships get built. I think God wants us to waste more time than we do. We should all become more intentional time-wasters.
This morning was a blessing to me and really a sabbath time. If we just hung out an hour, we would have caught up — four hours allowed us to go deep, ramble through random stories and cover a wide array of topics from theology to current events to relationships to a ton of other things. It was fun, refreshing, vitalizing and engaging.
This is the third time in a week I have had a chance to waste time. Last week I grabbed lunch in Hartford on the fly with a good friend; and then I had some plans change and found myself with a free night to hang with some good friends and catch up on Top Chef episodes and some good red wine. Both these were total wastes of time.
But wasting time is a really good thing.
When I was a pastor, I used to waste time a lot. In fact, I think that a pastor who does not waste a significant amount of their time at Starbucks just hanging out with people is not worth the salary the church is paying them. At its core, pastoring is relational work. But even more so, at its core, life is relational work.
I realized that for a variety of reasons — many out of my control — I have stopped wasting time. I often don’t have the margin to waste time. But now that school is done and I am working full time, if I want to, I can waste more time… and I want to.
It will need to be spontaneous and random and about God-appointments. I can’t schedule to waste time with you two weeks from now… but I might be able to in 20 minutes.