Archive for September 2015

I don’t have time!   Leave a comment

I don't have time

I don’t have time

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven” Eccl 3:1

When was the last time you said ‘I don’t have time’?

Even if there has been much improvements in technology to help man save time, each generation rising up complain that they do not have enough time. Washing machine, internet, phone, computers, dish washer, water heaters and various means of transport now exist to help man save time. How many additional hours would have been spent monthly if we still had to look for wood to cook, wash our clothes at the river or walk miles to buy our daily bread? We are going faster but time is still ahead of us. Each hour or day saved by the fabulous technologies are used to do other activities.

It is worth putting a halt now and reckon how we are using our time. Are we good steward of time? There’s nothing new under the sun, what has been will occur again(Ecc. 1:9). We have the same 24 hours as the early Christians who had the same responsibilities as us.  They had to wake early to fish or work in the fields. These Christians did not have the above mentioned technologies but still managed to wash their clothes. There was no tap in the kitchen to bring water, it had to be fetch. There were no cars to travel but carts. Yet these early Christians found time to spread the gospel, pray, look after their family and serve the Lord. We do not need 27 hours to complete what needs to be done daily.

Jesus once said “are not there 12 hours of day light?”. This statement probably meant that we have 12 long hours to do what needs to be done during the day and at the same time only 12 hours to do what needs to be done each day. Time is enough and should not be wasted. In the strict sense, if we sleep 8 hours daily, travel for 2 hours, work for 8.5 hours and do our household activities 2.5 hours daily, we still have 3 hours free on working days. For those not working in the weekend, the free time (excluding domestic responsibilities) available weekly would amount to about 2 days(my case)!

How then do I manage the 48 hours available to me each week?

Mary and Martha choose to use their time differently(Luke 10:38). It was important to do domestic chores but it was not urgent. This activity could have been scheduled for a later time. The Lord was there and He should have had the entire attention. It is important for me to eat but it is not always urgent. It is important for me to sleep but it becomes urgent only when I’m tired. It therefore is vital that we categorise as urgent, not urgent, important and not important things we need to do daily. We often put things which are not urgent on top of our priority list for selfish/carnal reasons. As a Christian author rightly said, lust is “I want it now”.

Martin Luther once said that he had so many things to do that he will spend the first three hours in prayer.

We need to ask the Lord to teach us to count our days and redeem time(Ps 90:12). People equate time with money. It is true in the sense that if we produce more within a specific time, we’ll earn more. This however became the downfall of the post-modern society. The greed of money made people trade their rights, families, relationship with God and health to gain more fame and money.

Often people complain that they have a busy schedule just to show their importance/indispensability and how much they are demanded. This is pride disguised. If we complain we do not have time, then we should question if we’re doing the right thing first.

Paul said to the Ephesians to make the best use of their time. Redeem time by replacing less important activities with those which are more important(Eph. 5:16, Col. 4:5)

A house falls in ruin if one is idle(Eccl 10:18, 11:6).

A virtuous woman is busy working for the welfare of her family(Prov. 13:15) but an idle woman gossips and causes trouble(1 Tim 5:13,2 Thes. 11)

When Jesus called on the way people to follow Him, He wanted them to follow Him on the spot. Those who responded did not refuse to follow Him but they rather wanted to put it for another time. They wanted to bury their dead (Mat. 8:22), look after their family first or inspect their field(Luke 14:15-24). They had important things to do but these were not urgent. Jesus’ call is both important and urgent. John and Peter left on the spot their nets to follow Jesus. Jesus call is the supreme call whereby it should not require time to think if we need to act urgently or sort down a list of important matters. When Jesus went to meet Matthew(Mat. 9:9), He just told him ‘Come and follow me’ and this man just left everything and followed Jesus. This man was in the middle of his work and left everything. He did not think about the consequence, he just obeyed Jesus’s call. The same happened to Peter and John who stopped their work to follow Jesus on the spot(Mat . 4:18. His will should always be at the top of our list. Is not Him for whom we live?

There’s a time for everything Ecclesiates 3 says but there’s no time to be idle or lazy.

Discipline is essential to be a good steward of time. A disciple of Jesus is one who is disciplined in the way he uses his time, money and words.

The parable of the 10 virgins teach of the necessity of preparation and readiness(Mat 25). 5 virgins were not ready because they did not wisely use their time to prepare themselves for the coming of the groom. It was too late. They were busy sleeping while others were waiting for what was important to them. Why is it that sometimes we say that we do not have time to pray or read the scripture? Most probably, it is because it is not urgent and important.

Life is bounded by time, this is why the word lifetime exists. If you lose your time, part of your life has been fruitless. Be zealous instead of being lazy the bible says.

Jesus had a very busy schedule. Chapters in the gospel often happened in a day. For example, we read “On the same day, Jesus went”. Matthew 7,13

The harvest is great but there’re not enough labourers. Ther’re few labourers because many have wordly excuses like those in the parable of the Great Feast(Luke 14:15-24). Some just got married, need financial stability or just started a business. Where your treasure is there also your heart will be Jesus said(Mat. 6:21).

Each day has its own lot Jesus said(Mat. 6:34).We should spend less time gossiping, debating, complaining and be at work in the field. Seeking first God’s kingdom will give sense to how we should spend the rest of our time. I noticed that those who are idle are always those who complain. They complain and see all kind of flaws because they have time for it.

The epistle to the Hebrews warns about those who came late(Hebrews 3:12-4:1). They came late because following God’s will was not urgent and important. The author of the Epistle to the Hebrews warned: “You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God“. TODAY if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart. This call is both urgent and important for tomorrow is not ours.

The diagram below might help us in our decision to allocate time daily. For example, Evangelism should be in the first quarter as it is both urgent and important. In fact it is the highest call. Every call of God should fall in this quadrant. God prepared works in advanced for us to do(Eph. 2:10). One day we’ll have to give an account to God for what He entrusted us. We’ll not be able to say that we simply did not have time to obey. May God grant us wisdom to use our time well.



Posted September 27, 2015 by Cedric in My writings (English)

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