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Chronos and Kairos: Time and the right time.

Updated: Jun 11, 2023

Put your watch and cell phone out of view for a little while.

(We dare not say “for a few minutes,” as that will defeat the point.)

Greek has two words that signify “time,” “Chronos:” and “Kairos.”

Chronos is, of course, chronological time—calendar, cellphone, wristwatch, grandfather-clock time.

Kairos is “the right time,” the appointed time, the time when something is meant to happen,

Or serendipitous time, that wonderful time when goodness or opportunity strikes,

Often without “warning” or expectation.

It could even be a moment that occurs to sweeten your day,

An unexpected joy, insight, or recalibration of perception.

Life can just be a succession of days, months, or years.

Or it can be a collection of wonderful Kairos events, many of which have not yet happened.

The Kairos of unexpected kindness, stumbling upon a thing of beauty,

Hearing meaningful words, feeling nostalgia,

Wistfully thinking of a first love.

Meeting a stranger who becomes a friend.

It could mean hitting the lottery literally,

Or the realization that—with all the good in your life—

You have hit the lottery of life.

Those Kairos moments are not counted in seconds, minutes, hours, days and years.

Kairos is counted smiles, laughter, or joyful tears,

Or even just a wistful sigh,

Or an “Aha!”

One ages more slowly thinking in Kairos

Rather in chronos.

Counting Chronos makes you old.

Counting Karios makes you joyful.

May you have a Kairos-filled life!

Now you may look at your watch again.

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