Most resources in life are renewable. If I run out of money, I can earn more even if it requires me to do something I’d rather not do. If I run out of food, I can grow more or buy more. If I lose the diamond in my wedding ring, I can have it replaced with another diamond. If we run out of electricity, we can generate more with wind turbines or dams. If our supply of fuel or food runs low, we can takes steps to replenish it. If we are running short on time, we can just ask for more.
Oh wait, I don’t think that last one is true. The amount of time I have and you have is finite. We have a supply of 24 hours in each day, and the number of our days is finite as well. “Man’s days are determined; you [God] have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.” Job 14:5. We don’t know when, but someday the hours and minutes we have left will run out, and we won’t be able to get any more. David cried out to God to make this truth apparent to him:
Show me, O LORD, my life’s end
and the number of my days;
let me know how fleeting is my life.
You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Each man’s life is but a breath. Psalm 39:4-5.
For that reason, time is the most precious resource we have. Yet so often we squander it away as if we have an unlimited supply. Just last night I wasted almost 3 hours of my time watching America’s Got Talent and other TV shows. I confess that I waste time watching TV more than I would like anyone to know. On one of the shows I watched last night the main character was challenged to spend just one day by herself instead of with her friends and family. She tried to fill her time alone with various activities such as counting coins from a jar and trying on clothes. I found it ironic that she never once turned on the TV.
There are things I want to do with my time, things that would bring glory to God. I want to write encouraging things on this blog. I want to spend time reading my Bible and in prayer. I want to spend time teaching my son (who, by the way, “just doesn’t care about time”) how to rely on God more. I want to spend my time working on a proposal for a new book idea that God has put on my heart. I want to spend time sharing with friends and family. I want to spend time keeping my house clean and tidy. (Okay, I don’t really want to do that, but I want my house to be clean and tidy.)
Then I waste 3 hours watching TV and accomplish none of those things.
The lyrics to the song “In the Blink of an Eye” by MercyMe keeps popping into my head:
Sometimes I feel disappointed
By the way I spend my time
How can I further Your kingdom
When I’m so wrapped up in mine
And though I’m living a good life
Can my life be something great?
I have to answer the question
Before it’s too late
If I give the very best of me
That becomes my legacy
So tell me what am I waiting for?
What am I waiting for?
Today one of my fellow bloggers pointed out that “My time is not mine – it’s Christ’s.” That really spoke to me because this post was already forming in my mind. I was already meditating on the fact that my time could be better spent for His glory than for my entertainment. I’m not suggesting God expects us to forego all entertainment. Just read Ecclesiastes 3 and you will find that God has appointed a time for all things. But it seems the desire for entertainment in our culture has overtaken the desire for God. We spend more time watching others do things — on TV, at the movie theater, at pro sports events — than we spend actually doing things ourselves or spending time with God.
I know that God has a plan for me, a plan that involves spending more time for His glory and less time passively watching others do things that most often do not glorify Him at all. “My time is not mine.” The time I have been given is a precious resource, an awesome gift from my wonderful Creator and God. Christ bought me at a very high price and all that I have is His, including this very moment and every other moment that I am blessed to enjoy.
So how about you? How are you spending your time? You are only allotted so much of it, you know.