When we look around us, particularly in Johannesburg, we see a people that are bent on success. There are those that are successful and work at maintaining their success, and then there are those that are pushing for success. I do not believe our value lies in whether we are successful or not, I believe our value lies in who we are in character and person, particularly who we are in the Lord.
Yet, I have observed that people who seem to make progress in life, use two things very carefully. Progress it seems, is linked to: how we use our resources and how we use our time.
Every person, from the beggar to the president is given the same amount of time, 24 hours in a day. The difference between them, is how they have used that time.
Rom 13:11-12 (MSG) “But make sure that you don’t get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. The night is about over, dawn is about to break. Be up and awake to what God is doing! God is putting the finishing touches on the salvation work he began when we first believed.”
I don’t believe that the God of time, who rules over all time, needs us to count every minute. But I do think He wants us to be aware of how we use our time and to be attentive to the times we are living in. Good stewardship includes being a good steward of our time.
Here are some suggestions on how to use your time:
- Use your time productively: Acts 9:20 (MSG) “Saul spent a few days getting acquainted with the Damascus disciples, but then went right to work, wasting no time, preaching in the meeting places that this Jesus was the Son of God.”
- Use your time to build relationships like the disciples planned for relationships (1 Cor 16:12 MSG), and Jesus planned the use of his time with people –Luke 13:32. Watch and observe how people spend their time.
- Use your time to build spiritually. Rom 6:12-13 (MSG) “That means you must not give sin a vote in the way you conduct your lives. Don’t give it the time of day. Don’t even run little errands that are connected with that old way of life. Throw yourselves wholeheartedly and full-time—remember, you’ve been raised from the dead!—into God’s way of doing things.” Gal 6:9-10 (MSG) ” So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.”
- Evaluate your progress, are you growing? Heb 5:11-14 (MSG) “By this time you ought to be teachers yourselves, yet here I find you need someone to sit down with you and go over the basics on God again, starting from square one—baby’s milk, when you should have been on solid food long ago! Milk is for beginners, inexperienced in God’s ways; solid food is for the mature, who have some practice in telling right from wrong.”
- Allocate time to make important and wise decisions or choices. 2 Cor 9:3-7 (MSG) Paul warns the Corinthians to take time to think about their giving, so that they make wise choices. By doing this you will minimize regret.
To consecrate something is to put it aside for holy use. The challenge each day, is to consecrate our days, our moments to the Lord and be present in the God moments. The goal is to make our time count for eternity and not allow it to be given to the day-to-day obligations only. It starts by being aware of how you spend your time and giving each day to the Lord.
2 Cor 8:5 Paul describes believers who “gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will”.
In Rom 12:1 Paul writes, “Therefore I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship.”
“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive.” 1 Cor 10:23 Let us think about how we spend our time.
Each morning, give the day to the Lord.
Father, today I give you my day. Keep my eyes and ears open to your Spirit, teach my, guide me, instruct me. Thank you for today, help me to remember that You hold the hours and minutes in Your hand and You have given me time. Help me to be a good steward, may my life glorify You today.
Psalm 90:12 (NIV) cries out: “Teach us to number our days aright that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” May we recognise that we only have a certain amount of time and make it count one day at a time.