Tuesday, September 3, 2013

OMTL Day 3: "Time Squared"

"As God's co-workers, we urge you not to receive God's grace in vain." 
                  --2 Corinthians 6:1

"Grace" is underserved kindness. It's a gift. Something you can never earn but only receive.

Have you ever considered that life itself is a gift of God's grace?

Think about it. You didn't earn it or work for it. You didn't have to prove yourself before your mother allowed you to be born. And even now, every time you take a breath, you are enjoying a gift that you could never create. Only God can create life. We can pass it on. But we can't create it.

In today's Scripture, Paul urges us not to receive God's grace--including the grace-gift of life itself--in vain.

That means, don't waste it. Don't squander it on trivial pursuits. Make the most of it.

Now, as soon as I said that, you probably thought something like, "How can I be more productive? How can I get more things done? How can I make bigger to-do lists and check off more and more items?"

Hang on. Making the most of time is not just about getting more things done. "Time Squared" reminds us that there are things we can do that take time that will actually make time in the long run. Prayer. Exercise. Sleep. Time off to rest and renew. Connecting with people who support you and put energy into your life.

And then there's this thing called "Eternity." While this life is short, it's not all there is. You were designed to live forever in the presence of God. How could you invest your time now in things that will matter then? It's been said that there are only two things that last forever--God's Word, and people. What could you do today that will still matter 100 years from now?

Right now, think of one thing you could do today that, even though it will take some time, will multiply your time in the long run. For example, pray, exercise (go for a prayer walk, and you could combine those two!), or go to bed early so that you have more energy tomorrow.

Then, as you go through the day--look for an opportunity to do something that will still matter 100 years from now. For example, memorize a Bible verse (God's Word lasts forever). Talk about Jesus with your kids. Invite a non-believer to church. Or spend time with someone important.

* For more on the concept of taking time to make time, see this post

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