Photo by Jon Tyson (unsplash)
“See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.” Ephesians 5:15-17 (KJV)
As I laid in bed the other day talking to Father God, asking about my life’s journey, He asked me the following question: “What is the one thing a person can lose, but will never find again?” Answer: “Time.” Yes time!
Father God continued our discussion by asking me, do you wake up excited? Do you wake up looking forward to what the day has to offer? Or, do you wake up regretting the new day? Wow! What questions to be asked!
Most of us, including me, have forgotten that time is a gift from God, given each day for us to enjoy and to honor Him? “When time is gone, we can never recapture it! We can replay over and over in our heads what we should have done, what we could have done, what we would like to do differently; but what we really should be thinking is how we can “thank God” for another new day. On this particular morning, I found myself grumbling about missed opportunities in life instead of appreciating what I have; and sad about my life’s choices instead of thanking Him for every season in my life – good or bad!
So I ask you as God asked me! What does today, this “gift of time,” hold for you? Time can be your enemy or time can be your friend. Which one have you chosen? Have you chosen – enemy or friend? Time as our enemy robs us from precious time spent with God and doing His will for our lives; and robs us of precious time we need to spend with our family and friends. As our enemy we wake up regretting the time we were robbed of because of foolish choices we can never reclaim or undo. The enemy wants us to live in regret, waking up wishing we had done that, wishing we could do this, wishing, wishing, wishing.
There was a popular movie in the late 80’s, “Back To The Future.” The star of the movie went back in time with electronic equipment invented by his friend. Once he arrived back in the predetermined time, he tried to alter time for his benefit. Just as this movie was fiction, so is wishful thinking, we can never alter time. God is the only one who can step in and out of time to change events and things, which He has never done. God doesn’t interfere with our choices in life; instead, He gives us the gift of time, and we are to be good stewards redeeming this gift wisely.
With time as our friend we should wake up thanking God for the day that He has given us, thanking God for the opportunities that lay ahead of us, thanking God for what plans He has for us in His “gift of time” – a free gift to everyone. Children of God should be the most joyful people in the world knowing we have the gift of time that we can use for the good of the Kingdom! There are many struggling with illnesses that don’t leave them much time on earth, such as a dear friend of mind, named Paula. She battled the enemy of cancer for five long years. In spite of her physical pain, she chose time as her friend until God took her home. She never complained, instead she embraced each hour and day as an opportunity to service Father God. She would hold weekly Bible studies in her home, witness to everyone she met, and spent time encouraging those that were discouraged. Until Paula took her last breath, she realized the value of redeeming time, she wanted to honor God in all that she did. She understood the “will” of God!
Colossians 4:5-6 exhorts us to “Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” We are all given the same amount of precious time – 24 hours. Yes, 24 hours per day to redeem wisely! When we do the math, we usually sleep 8 hours per day, which leaves us 16 hours to redeem our gift of time wisely. Our 16-hour day will be filled with many different people, some that know the Lord and some that don’t. As we redeem our time on earth each day, we are to be wise in our actions and words toward others, speaking words of life to all that we encounter. Souls are at stake! Unlike Cain’s comment about not being his brother’s keeper, we are our brother’s keeper! The “will” of God for a Believer’s life is to redeem the time wisely by warning those that are without the Kingdom. We are to walk wisely with our family, friends, and neighbors in the spirit of “love, thanksgiving, and gratefulness.”
Love: As stated, we each have 16 hours per day to shower others with love, which begins at home and then outward. We begin by asking Father God to help us to prioritize our day to be a light towards others. We are to have agape love with everyone, letting go of all offenses and loving as Jesus loves us. The Kingdom of God is LOVE!
Thanksgiving: We don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving to be thankful. Each and every day our hearts should be filled with thankfulness for what God has done for us at the Cross. Without His shed blood for the atoning of our sins, our only option would be death and not life. No matter what we are going through, our hearts should always be filled with love and thanksgiving for the gift of life given to us by Jesus Christ. As Believers, we read the end of book (Bible). We win!
Gratefulness: James 4:14 is a great reminder of why we need to be grateful. (“Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”) We should enjoy each moment of the day being grateful and content with what we have been blessed with by God. We aren’t promised a tomorrow, nor are we promised that life will always be as we planned. We unfortunately live in a culture of entitlement and ungratefulness in which many see no value in contentment, instead their thoughts are on wanting more, bigger and better. Gratefulness and contentment are key in redeeming time wisely. As kingdom people, our hearts are not set on earthly possessions – our hearts are set on Heaven!
So, how will you spend your time on earth? Let’s purpose in our hearts to redeem the precious gift of time by making a difference in someone’s life through love. Time is a precious gift, it can be your enemy, or time can be your friend. Let it be your friend today and every day! When you stand before Father God one day, will He say “well done my faithful servant?” Today I encourage you to let time be your friend, wake up every day redeeming the gift of time with the “will” of God. Only you can manage it, so manage it bringing honor to Father God!