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Resetting the Clock

Making choices about your Time

                            RESETTING THE CLOCK

                Making choices about the times of your Life


by David Kidd


Everyone seems busy. Autralia, in fact, seems more like the "busy
country" than the "lucky country" it is called.
     Many people work long hours; both parents usually work.
People who are too busy have little time or energy for one
another or can't connect because they work different shifts. An
African immigrant once expressed his amazement to me about all
the activity here. Now he is very busy, too.
     Despite our industriousness, many of us feel that we are not
really making progress. Maybe we relate to the prophet who
lamented:

"You have sown much, and bring in little; you eat, but do not
have enough; you drink, but you are not filled with drink; you
clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; and he who earns wages,
earns wages to put into a bag with holes" (Haggai 1:6).

     Most of us are over-committed and tired, with limited time.
Yet our Bibles tell us to be fruitful in every good work and
zealous for them. Jesus said that the harvest is plentiful but
the laborers few. As He spoke these words, He looked at the
multitudes with compassion. He saw them weary and scattered, like
sheep having no shepherd.
     Today we also see many people in great need, but we are too
busy or tired to help. The shortage of the Lord's laborers is
urgent. Some of us feel frustrated and sorry because we know that
we are barely doing His work at such a critical time.
     Many Christians don't realize the gravity of this situation.
Many don't appreciate that to be a Christian is to be a dedicated
servant of the living God. Satan has done a good job tying us up
in our stressful lives, doing little for the kingdom of God.
That's the bad news.
     If our conscience is pierced by this, what can we do about
it?

Options

     First, we could pretend that nothing is wrong and do nothing
about it. Then we would be like the seed sown among thorns,
choked by worldly cares and the deceitfulness of riches, or like
the wicked, lazy servant who buried his one talent and was
later rejected. This option leads nowhere.
     Second, we could forsake all and follow Jesus, serving Him
on the front line - by faith. Levi the tax collector did that
when Jesus called. Perhaps God is asking us to step out and
follow Him full time.
     The second option might seem too radical. Certainly not
every believer in the Bible took up his knapsack to follow the
Lord or His apostles on their arduous journeys. Most first
century Christians lived and worked in one area. Many stayed in
the same state in which they were called (1 Corinthians 7:20-24).
They worked to feed their families, support the local church,
help their neighbors, and provide funds to help others in the
work of the Lord.
     Don't discount this ministry of financial giving. The Lord
can use you greatly, busy as you are, if you obey the Word about
supporting outreach with your dollars. We all have time to do
this.
     Regardless of our circumstances, each of us can serve the
Lord in all we do, right where we are (Colossians 3:22-24). Even
while on the job, we can work to the glory of God, be a good
witness to co-workers and clients, and share the gospel at
opportune times. This is the third option.

Seeking the Kingdom

     One final option should also be considered for those not
called to leave all and follow in the same manner as Levi. You
can pray and plan in faith to one day be free of your busyness
and fatigue brought on by mostly secular concerns. May I share my
own blessing in this regard?
     I obtained a law degree but soon realized that I would be
too busy as a lawyer to make much time contribution to the Lord's
work. God led me to a more creative way of using my legal skills
that doesn't tax my time or energy. Thus I thank God for His
faithfulness in providing all my needs. Now I have a successful
business as an author and publisher in the law, and I have the
time and flexibility to serve the Lord as well.

Not Busy?

     A note for those who have free time: Value it highly; learn
to appreciate it. Be like the slave who was told to use his
freedom for the Lord, if it should come his way (1 Corinthians
7:21).
     Don't be like the carnal Christian who suddenly finds time
on his hands, gets bored, and seeks new challenges in everything
but the service of the Lord. Plenty of difficult and exciting
challenges remain in Christian ministry. Find one and tackle it!
Don't be like the successful rich man who decided to build bigger
barns and take it easy. He was dispossessed of his life soon
after that.
     Don't be sidetracked with activities that might not make a
real difference in people's lives. Be careful to use your time
wisely. Some of us have had time on our hands for a long while
but don't seem to know how to use it fruitfully for the Lord. One
sure answer to this is Jesus' example of caring for the physical
and spiritual needs of people. I urge you to find ways to serve
people through personal contact. People hardly have time for one
another these days. Many will appreciate your efforts to make
time for them.


Call to Respond

     If your heart has been hardened with regard to serving the
Lord and others, tremble - and reconsider. God has sacrificed His
Son and has a wonderful gift of eternal life for you. Show some
gratitude, or risk falling away through the busyness of this
world.

     If something in this article has pricked your conscience,
say, "Hallelujah" or "Amen": You are alive spiritually! Now take
up one of the options (except the first) with all your heart.

     Thus says the Lord of Hosts, "Consider your ways."

                              ...............


David and Angella Kidd attend and serve in the Adelaide church in
South Australia.

Taken from "The Bible Advocate" September 2008, a publication of
The Church of God, Seventh Day, Denver, CO.USA


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