Time

I wanted to start this out with something clever and catchy, but truth to be told, I have nothing like that. Simply put, God has been teaching me some things about time.

Time, as you know, marches ever onward, and we can do nothing to stop it. Have you ever watched people as they try to fight time? They break into a sweat, cut back on sleep, eat fast food, and generally drive themselves crazy trying to gain time. But time is something that comes and goes, and we can‘t speed it up or down. We can only decide what we do with it.

You will always feel trapped by time when you try to control it. You need to let time run its course and choose to bring your life under that. Several months back, I realized that I wanted more time with God. Rather than try some superhero disciplined effort to make time, I chose to drop some things I was doing for several months (specifically Facebook). Quite simply, as I quit spending time on Facebook, I had more time to spend with God. We cannot gain time; we can only change how we decide to use it.

You see, when you‘re dealing with time, what you don‘t do is just as important as what you do. My choice to take a break from Facebook opened up the opportunity to invest that time differently. Every “yes“ is a “no“. Your only choice is whether it will be intentional or accidental. If you say “yes“ without saying “no“, you‘ll only say “no“ to the things that aren‘t screaming loudly, and unfortunately the important things of life rarely scream loudly.

Here‘s where this part gets practical:

* Write down your vision for your life–or better yet, God‘s vision for your life. What is your role in the kingdom of God?
* Think about the things that you need to quit doing and write them down. Quit doing them.

You can fight and scream, you can hope and dream, and you can jump up and down until you‘re blue in the face. But until quit doing things that don‘t fit into your life call, you‘ll only find yourself frustrated (if you’re lucky) or drifting apathetically and aimlessly someplace you don‘t want to go (much worse).

One last thing.

Some of these same principles apply to your relationship with God.

If you are going to understand what God is doing in your life, you need to understand two things. First of all, you need to understand your destiny, because this is where God is wanting to take you. These are the promises God has over your life. Second of all, you need to understand the current season of your life, because that‘s the current step in the journey to your destiny. In short, you need to understand how God looks at time.

Unlike man, God is never late and never hurried. He will accomplish what He wants in His time. For Abraham that meant waiting for a son until He was a hundred years old. God is sovereign, and He will do with your life as He wishes. After all, everything that you have, you have been given. If you get to see His promise fulfilled early in life, glory to God! If you need to wait until the end of your life to see the promise fulfilled, glory to God! It‘s all a gift; what does it matter when you get it?

For much of my life, I‘ve told God what I want. I‘ve told Him what I want to do with my life, and I‘ve told Him the kind of person I want to become. But the simple truth is, God is sovereign, and He will give me what He wills in His time. I keep learning to stop trying to control God and just accept with gratitude everything He pours into my life.

You see, nothing I do can hurry God, but I am able to drag my feet in the dirt and slow Him down. God has me in a certain season right now to prepare me for my destiny, and He has me in this season because of something He wants to teach me. I cannot tell God what to do, where to take me, or when to move me on; I can only cooperate with God to learn the lessons He has for me here.

Sometimes it‘s clear to us how we‘re not cooperating with God‘s plan, but sometimes it‘s difficult to see. Remember, every “yes“ to one thing is a “no“ to something else. You might not be blatantly saying “no“ to what God has for you, but you might be doing that implicitly by the things you‘re saying “yes“ to.

Let‘s get practical one more time.

* Take a moment to seek God and find out what season you‘re in.
* Ask His Spirit to reveal the ways that you are not cooperating with Him for the season you‘re in. Ask Him to show you things you are saying “yes“ to that are turning into a “no“ to His plans.
* Change your way of thinking and way of life to cooperate with God‘s plan.

And that, my friends, is a little bit of what God is teaching me about time. You can‘t control it; you can only use it. And you can‘t control God‘s time and seasons; you can only cooperate with Him. Take hold of those truths and spend your time with eternal impact and eternal rewards.

Soli Deo Gloria.

5 comments

  1. Good word ! Thanks for the insight , it’s and area I want to grow in .

  2. Thanks for the reminder that saying yes also means saying no. I like reading your posts. Keep it up!

  3. Betrothed in Righteousness

    When you say every “Yes” is a “no”, are you meaning those things that you know aren’t good for you, or also those things that are just choices? I was thinking, and wrapping my head around this, and I just do better when I can write it out. Say you said yes to a bible study and no to a bible speaker, does that mean you could not going for what God has in store for you? Or…are you saying that if you say yes to going to a movie and no to a bible study, then you could not be going for what God has in store for you? The difference being in scenario one, both activities have great potential to show you more of Jesus, whereas in scenario 2, one is more of a fleshly entertainment vs showing you more of Jesus. Just needing some clarification.

    • I mean this for any choice. Sometimes we are so intent on what we think we want, that we fail to see what we are missing. Many times this is just a principle of life–you can’t be in two places at one time.

      In the case of the movie and Bible study, you might have good reasons for going to the movie. But you need to be aware that you’re saying “no” to the Bible study, and you need to make sure that you are investing your life for the outcome you want. Conversely, you can’t go to the Bible study without saying “no” to the movie, so unless you let go of the concept that you will only do the things you immediately feel like doing, you’ll never have the strength to say yes for the things that are best for you.

      Don’t know if that helps at all.

  4. Brother,

    Such a refreshing post. Asking God to direct our priorities is huge. Blessings as you serve Him faithfully. You are a blessing.

    Avoiding the “tyranny of the urgent” and finding correct priority is huge.

    -Ken

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