My son only asks for some of it, and by nature of our culture’s lifestyle and demands, that’s all he gets. He will use his best “sad puppy eyes” and at times even be willing to plead with the back of my head in order to get it. What am I talking about?
My time and attention.
I am fairly confident that when I share that with you that I am not standing with my nose in the corner on this one. We all have this problem. We get up, cajole our kid(s) out of the bed and shove them in the shower. We scramble to get ourselves ready and then jump in our vehicles to play bumper cars on the highway and red light green light at the school line. Then, we are separated from them for at least eight hours (or more if you work until five pm) per day. Notice that I am just speaking of the morning time, I haven’t even touched our extra-curricular activities and other demands. We then get home and just simply try to relax as much as possible before we start it all over again.
So, what do we do with that small window of time we have together?
We pick up our phones, tablets, laptops, DVRs, Apple TVs, ChromeCasts, YouTube, Netflix…on and on I could go. If our neck gets tired from watching something on our tablets, we just stream it through the tv. If we get bored with our thirteen episode binge of Longmire, then we pick up our phones and binge on the latest game that mimics Candy Craze. While you’re choosing which show to binge on next, the kids are busy on the tablet you just handed to them watching who knows what on YouTube. Then, we enter into “Facebook zombie” mode. This is where we really detach from reality. Look, Mom, this is our new past time! The 21st Century’s way of combining information and entertainment; we call it “infotainment.”
Is this what God had in mind for us in our downtime? What is this teaching our children? What is this teaching us?
I find in my own life and in others around me that time is valuable to us, but if time is so valuable and so important, then why do we find ourselves wasting it so much?
In the Scriptures, The Ephesian church had been urged to walk wisely and not in the darkness of their current social climate and former lifestyles. Notice the structure of the verses of Scripture
“Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16(Emphasis mine)
WASTING TIME IS AN INDICTMENT ON US.
Debauchery, theft, neglect, idolatry, drunkenness, and on and on I could go. You name it and it was named among the culture around them. But, through the pen of His apostle, God was warning the church to avoid being evil like the rest of the world around them. But how exactly were they to do it?
By killing what robs them of Kingdom productivity.
They were called to be different. They were called to make every moment count for gospel goodness. They were called to make every opportunity one that shines the light of the gospel in their lives. They were to seize each moment and make it productive for the Kingdom. Why? Because, the days were evil, wicked, God-hating, self-serving, others-neglecting, materialistic, and fruitless for eternity. The Greek word literally meant to redeem. They were to assume that time came at a high price and make sure it was budgeted wisely.
How can we make the most of our time? How can we squeeze every drop of opportunity from every hour we have on this earth for the glory of God?
I hope to attack this question in future weeks by sharing how I’ve began my personal campaign against this plague. I have, by no means, mastered this subject but I have certainly recognized it. It’s high time that we all do, before we stand and give an account for our time (Matthew 25:14-30).
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