I wonder if any of us are really born to always be “late” or “early”.  I wonder if that’s just an excuse.  I wonder if it really is just a perspective on what is truly important.  If I am late somewhere it’s because I was focused on other things instead of getting to where I was suppose to be getting to.  Priorities.  Lateness to something denotes a feeling that something is not that important.

When I am late to work, it is because I spent longer on my hair or in the shower or making myself breakfast.  So it could be said, I found my hair or my shower or my breakfast more important than work.

In my Caucasian Western brain, being on time shows respect.  It means that, although there are tons of things I could have done instead, I decided to stop all that and come see you!  To me, it’s a way of honor.  If my Pastor is preaching at church and I slip in 20 minutes into his sermon, what does that say?  It could mean that I really didn’t believe he would say anything meaningful in those first 20 minutes, that I have more important things to do, and that he is an afterthought.

When I show up somewhere early, it’s because I am expecting.  I am expecting results.  I want to be on the “front row” of what is going on.  I don’t want the left overs-I want to get the appetizers, the soup, the salad, the entre, the beverages and 5 refills, with the dessert sampler plate.

When someone asks me to save them a seat because they know I am going early and they want to be late, I find it offensive.  It offends me that they want the benefits of coming early but will not sacrifice anything.  They want the appearance of expecting by getting a seat in the front but their heart is not in it.  They want to get other things done while I sacrifice all that other stuff to save us seats.

Am I late to places?  Of course.

Is there grace for late people? Of course.

Do people have legit reasons for being late?  Of course.

But lateness can mean that you find someone else’s time not as important as your time.

I find it rude.  Most cultures do not.  But then again, that’s why I fit in so well in the good ol’ United States of America.  I live by the clock.  Heaven does not.  But I still don’t like it when people are late.

You best be believing that I came at 11 AM on the dot when I was born, I will be getting married on time, and I will not be late to my own funeral!

(and if any of this sounds funny, it’s probably because Amy Grant is singing in the background…”Baby, Baby, I am taken with the notion to love you with the sweetest of devotion…and ever since the day you put my heart in motion, baby I realize there’s just no getting over yoooooooouuuuuu, over you!”)