Enough Time

How many times do you catch yourself saying, “I don’t have enough time?”

When I first started teaching, I think those words stumbled from my lips daily. Lack of time was a perpetual excuse, but then I read a 37signals blog post containing this nugget:

There’s always enough time, you’re just not spending it right.

Now, I’m sure you could poke a thousand holes into that statement, so let me marginally rephrase it: There’s always enough time to do the important things; you’re just not spending it right.

Think about how much time a day you waste, and compare that time to the amount of time it would take to do those things you complain you haven’t enough time to do. If you’re like me, you’ll see that you did indeed have time for the important things. One way or another, however, that time was squandered. It’s tough to admit, and it’s tough love to point out, but we have to be willing to face that salient fact.

When it comes to our time, Paul writes, in Ephesians 5:15-16:

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.

Time has a habit of slipping away unnoticed. It sneaks up on us. It flies by. But there is always enough of it if we use it wisely, for time is the great equalizer. It is the one thing we are all given equally. Yes, the actual number of years you or I are given may differ in the end, but we all have the same number of days making up those years. We all have the same number of hours making up a day. We all have the same number of minutes that make an hour. Time is equitably distributed to all, but, because it is so freely available, we may find ourselves wasteful with it.

Consider this: People like Albert Einstein, Isaac Newton, Marie Curie, Martin Luther King, Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Alexander the Great, George Washington, Bill Gates, Susan B. Anthony – none of these historical figures had one second longer in the day than we have, and quite a few of them had far fewer years than we enjoy. Spiritual forefathers like Moses had the same amount of time to do God’s work that we have on a daily basis. Isaiah, Jeremiah, Elijah, and all of the other prophets worked within those same recurring twenty-four-hour periods. Jesus, Peter, Paul – again, they had the same amount of time during the day and perhaps fewer days in which to complete that work. It’s not the amount of time these great individuals had, it’s how they used it.

We don’t have enough time? If I had the time today to read the obituaries and the rant column in the newspaper, I had the time to do God’s work. If I had the time to check Facebook, to tweet, to blog, or to forward cute emails, I had time to do God’s work. If I had time to stare mindlessly at a TV set while the likes of Glenn Beck and Ed Schultz filled my mind with feelings of fear and anger, I had time to do God’s work. If I had time to fling some angry birds through the air on my iPhone or hunt down zombies on my XBox 360, I had time to do God’s work. If I had time to sit down and have a break room conversation with a friend, I had time and opportunity to do God’s work.

There is time to study. There is time to teach. There is time to help the needy. There is time to lift another’s load. There is time to show mercy, kindness, and charity to our fellows. There is time to lead others to Christ. There is time to spread hope, peace, and love. There is time to do good to all, as well as to those of the household of faith. There is time to do God’s work. We just have to start spending that time wisely.

We always have enough time to do God’s work. Let’s start using it correctly.