Welcome to February! Wait… February ALREADY?? How come January flew by so quickly? I wonder how many of us say that to ourselves every year? Responsibilities seem to crowd and creep into our lives, making us busy and we try our best to fulfil everything expected of us and we don’t realise the time passing us by….
I once wished that God would give me 28 hours instead of just 24 and my mindset was challenged with this question: If God does give me 28 hours, what is to say that after a while, I won’t ask for 30?
I believe that many of us view time as a commodity. (A commodity can be described as, “a marketable item produced to satisfy wants or needs”). When I was first introduced to that possibility, I automatically became defensive and attempted to argue that I don’t use time in that way; until I realised how subversive the world can be in influencing my world view. Upon closer examination of my own life and even the words I use (eg, “manage my time”), I realise that I do indeed treat time as a commodity.
I forgot that time is God’s gift to us. We don’t own time, we are stewards of it. Therefore, the time God has given us on this earth is holy. Do we treat time as holy though? Do we view our time on earth as a precursor to eternity with God?
“So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Ps 90:12)
“Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Eph 5:15-16)
A challenge for many of us (myself included) is that countless things and responsibilities come our way and we busy ourselves with them. Being busy however, isn’t the issue. God warns us against laziness and sloth and He desires for us to go all out for Him, to surrender our lives to Him – serve and live for Him in abandonment.
However, have we used our time unwisely on the wrong things, using “busy-ness” as a mask and cloak to hide our perceived inadequacies?
God understands our challenges and what He often desires of us then is that we be still before Him. Psalm 23, a beloved psalm for many, describes how God, as our Shepherd, leads us beside still waters to restore our soul. God calls us to be still before Him and drink deeply from His Word, from Himself. Are we willing to put our faith in God, trusting that HE will help us through the work, the job and the responsibilities?
These things will always be there, so we shouldn’t think that being still and spending reflection time before God should only be done after we complete our work and hence are able to set aside the time to do so.
Rather, we should use time to be still before God in spite of all of that, even before all of that. For it is only in the quietness before God, as we listen to Him speak, can we then become as “busy” as He wants us to be in our work for Him.
Will you then be still?
By Adrian Ow, Pastoral Staff (YCKC Bulletin 7&8 February 2015)