The Time Stop
Coming to terms with the fact that Christmas is one week away, 2015 is almost done and I somehow have not adequately prepared for either reality certainly makes the statement, “Where has time gone?” feel like an accurate summation of my life at the moment. But after a bit of humble and reluctant analysis I think I have to admit the powerlessness found in this question. Although it may feel like it, is it really true that time can just “run off on us”?
I think if I really tried I could discover just where exactly my time went.
A prayer of Moses is recorded in Psalm 90 in which he makes this power filled request from the Lord
“Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom”
To “number our days” is referring to counting in the literal sense to take account of our days or to know how many days we have. It carries with it the reality of having or taking control over something, in this case “our days”. This makes for an astounding teaching on stewarding our time.
We all know we are supposed to but the question is
One answer offered in this passage is a good starting point to the process of taking ownership over our time. Moses is simply saying we need to become aware of our time on the earth and what we’re doing with it.
Liken this to eating a bag of skittles. You can either, open one end, dump them all in your mouth (as many as you can before choking) and eat them in one sitting. Or, you can carefully lay them out on the table and count them so you know just how many you have.
This is the first part “counting our days” in order to know what we have so that we don’t consume them too quickly without enjoying what really matters.
Now, once you’ve counted all your skittles you can figure out how you want to “eat” them in order to get the most out of the bag! You can plan which combinations to eat first or which colors to eat last. You have slowed down and taken account of them which enables you to make a plan of how to eat them the way you really want to.
This can be applied to time. If we can evaluate the time we have, not necessarily the overarching theme of our lifespan but in the sense of everyday living, we are much closer to taking ownership over it.
Time, by itself, is no more an enemy than a willing ally
It doesn’t innately work for or against us
We choose which role it will play in our lives.
Time only runs away from us when it has not been properly harnessed by us. We harness our time by first rejecting the notion that we are powerless to control it. We then can evaluate our time and priorities to find out areas of improvement.
This process, however, will look different for everyone (which is why I have not even attempted to include a list of steps or program for achieving this!) but I believe the starting point is the same. It is a decision to own our time in order to be able to give it wholeheartedly to the things most beneficial.
“Look carefully how you walk, not as unwise but as wise
making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.”
In the present Christmas season many of us will have to refuse to fall into the trap of over-scheduling. Although we have family and friends who rightfully deserve a good portion of our time, if we’ve taken ownership in this area we are better equipped to give it to them in a healthy way. This leads to us enjoying life more, enriching the lives of others and being able to love and serve the Lord with gladness.
I pray this Christmas you and I will find the freedom available in owning the time we have and living it to the fullest.
Linking up this blog at www.purposefulfaith.com today!