When I was a child, my father chided me about wasting time. “Put that book down,” he would say. “Do something useful.” That admonition still resonates in my life. In fact, I find satisfaction in filling up those little squares in my day-timer. My life has purpose when I’m busy. I do my best to stop and listen when someone comes to me with concerns. I try to visit shut-ins and friends. When someone is needed for a task, I volunteer. My family knows that I can be depended on to come in an emergency. I try to use the gifts God has given me to spread God’s Word of love. I have often declared, “Come judgment day, God will have a long list of my failures, but at least God will know that I didn’t waste God’s precious gift of time.”
Lately, I’ve had some second thoughts about my use of time. Maybe God has the following questions for me and for all of us:
“How much time do you set aside for caring for yourself? That amazing body I created for you needs sleep, exercise, fun.
“How much time do you waste worrying about things that never happened, or things you can’t change? Do you trust me?”
“How much time do you waste complaining about your problems, lamenting about what you don’t have or can’t do? Do you ever count your blessings?”
“When you do rest, do you fill your mind with kind, loving and peaceful thoughts? Think about the books you read, movies you see, video games you play. Do you waste your moments of rest?”
Maybe God is saying, “I give you twenty-four precious hours. Yes, you care for others, but yourself? I’m not so sure. Seems like there’s been time wasted there. You’ve got a few days, months, years left, make some changes, now. Remember you are valuable. Use your time wisely.
“For God created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139: 13-14)