How Are We Spending Our Time?
One of the things God has blessed us all with is time. Some of us are blessed with more of it than others, but it’s certain that it is a blessing the Christian should not take for granted. God created time for mankind (Gen. 1:14), and the way that we use that time is critical to our spiritual and eternal future. Some may choose to squander God’s precious gift on selfish, material, or worldly activities; but the Bible tells us that the time we have on this earth was given to us to prepare ourselves for eternity. King Solomon conducted a grand experiment to find what would bring him pure joy and peace. He wrote the book of Ecclesiastes to detail his experiences. He had fame, fortune, power, and plenty of time on his hands to find out what to do with it all. By the end of the book he said, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil” (Eccl. 12:13,14). He also made this memorable statement about time: “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven…” (Eccl. 3:1). Solomon understood our time on earth was limited, and that different times in our lives would serve different purposes (take time to read Eccl. 3:2-8). All of this should lead us to consider what we should be doing with the time God has blessed us with as Christians. Let’s consider some of the essentials.
1. Let’s use our time to LIVE for God. The Christian life should be an exciting adventure; not years of solemn waiting until it’s our turn to pass into eternity. Jesus was speaking of us when He said, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). God wants us to LIVE an abundant life in His service. He wants us to shine as lights for Him in a dark and dying world (Matt. 5:13-16). He wants us to spend time living with, and for others. The apostle Paul said we should help others when the opportunity (time) appears. He wrote, “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Gal. 6:10). When we dedicate our lives to Christ, we should be dedicating our time to living for Him.
2. Let’s use our time to LEARN all we can about God. Time is precious, and we should dedicate as much of it as we can to learning more about God (2 Tim. 2:15). The Bible is another precious gift from God, but it’s one that takes a great deal of time and effort to study. Paul reminded Timothy of this when he wrote, “But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 3:14,15).
3. Let’s use our time to LOOK to God for help. We do this by studying the Bible, but we also look to God in prayer. This is an area where most Christians fall short. We just don’t spend enough time with God in prayer. We tend to look inside ourselves or to the world around us for answers to the problems of life when God wants us to look to Him through the blessing of prayer. The apostle Paul stated that we should “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17), and “continue earnestly in prayer” (Col. 4:2). Remember, we can go “boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16).
4. Let’s use our time LOVING God and one another. The apostle John wrote, “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:7,8). God loved us before time began, and we know that because He planned on sacrificing His Son for us from the foundation of the world (Eph 1:3-6; Rev. 13:8). If God loved us before time began, we should spend what time we have loving Him and all those whom He sent Jesus to die for.
How are you spending most of your time? Take some TIME to think about it! -Ed