Redeeming the Time

A friend once said, “If I won’t let you spend my money, why should I let you spend my time?” The words captured me. What do I really value more: time or money?

I spend much of my time earning money, but it seems appropriate, what I ought to be doing. I need work to be healthy; it humbles me, challenges me and gives me a sense of purpose. Work isn’t a curse, it’s commanded (Ex 20:9), so it’s a blessing (Ps 19:11); I’m a better person for it.

But I suppose that’s why I’m also constantly valuing my free time in monetary terms: it’s valuable, but how valuable? Spending my life in temporal pursuits will leave only a blur, a distant memory.

I can always get more money, but I’ve only a fixed amount of time on Earth; not one second more than Abba’s given, each one a perfect gift to enjoy and serve Him. Yet there are innumerable ways to spend our time, and so many clamor for a piece of it.

If there’s no eternal purpose in a moment it’s lost, gone forever. I want each one to count for Him, to redeem the time. (Col 4:5), creating eternal value, being intentional and deliberate, not cruising through life, or letting others spend it for me.

Resting, relaxing, taking it easy –  this isn’t necessarily wasting time, it’s also commanded. (Ex 20:10) Enjoying God in games and Creation … He’s given us richly all things to enjoy (1Ti 6:17) … re-creation … to rejuvenate our souls and minds. Leisure has it’s purpose, helping us stay healthy and balanced, but it’s not our goal.

We each have unique gifts, ways we’re particularly enabled to serve God, so we each have a unique purpose in this life. We’ll be held accountable for how we live it. (Mt_12:36) The goal is to so run that we hear in the end, “Well done!” (Mt 25:21)

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