Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Daylight Saving Time

Daylight Saving Time, either you hate it or love it. There are many who simply wish that we would never have to change our clocks ahead or back an hour. We usually hear these arguments in the spring, when we “lose an hour of sleep”. However, there are many more who enjoy the extra time in the sun at the end of the day.

I really have no preference in the matter. I like being able to do more in the evenings before it gets dark, but I pretty much go with whatever daylight I have. The only bothersome thing I have found about Daylight Saving Time is trying to get our kids to adjust. It is difficult to make them begin the bedtime routine when it is still light outside. However, after a week or so, it becomes less of a problem.

Since we moved our clocks forward this weekend, I have been thinking about the whole issue. Did you know that DST was first proposed by Benjamin Franklin in 1784? It wasn’t tried until some European countries adopted the practice during World War I. In 1918, the United States put it into practice, but it proved unpopular and was discontinued in 1919.

DST was adopted again during World War II and was called “war time”. After the war in 1945, states, cities and towns could choose whether or not to observe it. It was only in 1966 that Congress passed the Uniform Time Act, stating when DST should start and end. Even then, states could decide if they wished to adopt the practice or not.

The language used when people refer to DST is very interesting. We talk about “losing or gaining an hour of sleep”. I have heard people say that we “get an extra hour of daylight”. Perhaps you have said similar things. The truth is, we still have a 24-hour day. The sun is out the same amount of time each day, regardless what our clocks tell us. We do have shorter days in the winter and longer ones in the summer due to the Earth’s orbit, but switching our clocks back and forth does not give us extra daytime or rob us of the sun’s rays.

We like language that makes us feel good about ourselves. Referring to DST in this way makes us feel like we have some control of the Earth, when all we are doing is shifting things that we can control like our watches. Just because I move my watch ahead to 5PM at 2PM does not mean I can go home from work. It just means I have shifted my personal guideline for time.

We make these shifts in our walk with Christ also. We believe because we do good deeds, attend church, love puppies and children, buy Girl Scout cookies, and obey most traffic signs, that we somehow earn good graces with God. This is simply providing a smoke screen and God can see right through it.

Just as there are only 24 hours in a day, no matter how we measure it, there is only one way to have a relationship with God. Jesus shed His blood so that we would have full access to the One who created us. Call your good deeds what you like, but they will not earn you a place in Heaven. Call upon the One who is Light, and He will guide you with a light everlasting.

Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years. (Genesis 1:14)

Life was in Him [Jesus], and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, yet the darkness did not overcome it. There was a man named John who was sent from God. He came as a witness to testify about the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but he came to testify about the light. The true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. (John 1:4-9 HCSB)

1 comment:

Vickie said...

Hey Stacy! I enjoyed your blog. I'm going to take a copy for Mema to read. We are so proud of the work you are doing in Edgefield. Love ya! Your favorite Aunt!