When my friend and I were told that school went 6 days a week, it was all we could do to keep our mouths closed in the presence of the schoolmaster; but as soon as we were alone we vocalized our shock and frustration. We had just arrived at what would be our home for the next three months, Two Worlds Public School in Vishakhapatnam, India, and had been informed that, unlike American schools, theirs ran all week long.
The irony of the above situation, as my friend can attest, is that throughout our time there we only taught 6 days of one week due to holidays and unexpected excursions. But why did it matter so much to us? Simply put, we are Americans and we valued our weekends.
At least, I thought I valued the weekend at the time. Truth be told, I didn’t. Nothing about the way I was raised, educated, or the way I lived actually placed emphasis on the weekend. In fact, in high school, weekends were usually exponentially busier than the week.
Obviously what I am driving at is that I now feel like I truly anticipate the weekend.
Take this week for example, although it is not entirely exemplary it does give a decent representation of my life.
I get up at 7 everyday, out of necessity, and this week was no exception. I spend an hour getting ready – read a psalm, prepare the coffee, take a shower, do some dishes (this is always needed), brew the coffee, make a sandwich (for lunch), make and/or eat breakfast, pour the coffee, get dressed, wake up my brother, drink coffee, talk, pray and leave.
Then there is the commute. With a combination of bus, train and foot I make it to work in a little less than an hour.
Then I work. Full-time. Forty(+) hours a week. Work can be fun. But, when you do the same thing, in the same office, at the same desk, everyday, it begins to wear you down a little. I had a breakthrough a few weeks ago: I have responsibilities. There is a fraction of this company, however small it may be, that is resting on my shoulders and the work I do. As exciting as it is to be 20 years old and have that kind of responsibility, it changed my interaction with the workplace – it is more than just a fun place, it is a place of duty.
This week I had something every evening after work: Monday, watched the school play; Tuesday, class; Wednesday, debate society; Thursday, class; Friday, Intervarsity. I got home by 10 at the earliest, every night, which means 14 hours straight of being out of my apartment.
My week is both long and arduous. I am not living in la-la fun land. I am also not complaining. Life is good, but I am living for the weekend.
The weekend brings three things that I cherish: rest, friends, and church. I overdose on these three. And you know what? That makes the week even harder because I know the joy that awaits me at the end, and I want it so badly that it drags on me all week.
But I must press on – we must press on – because the whole point is to long for the greater, to see the things of this world become a drag on us as we fight for eternity. And we are given the little, momentary rests to encourage us on to greater depths.
See, the week is endurable because I know that the weekend is coming.