The word “spend” comes from an old English word, “spendan” (forspendan, use up). Everyone knows what it means to spend or “use up” money. But not many individuals allow themselves to be aware of using up time (Where has all the time gone?). That is especially true in the younger ones.
We all have been given a deposit of the time and no one knows how much. The seconds are practically ignored, but seconds become minutes, minutes become hours, hours make days, days—weeks, weeks become months, which turn into a year that we reminisce about for a few minutes each New Year’s Day. We quick scan the past year, resolve to do some things differently, stop doing other things, and turn over a new page of time, and forget our resolutions.
But about those seconds. In a second the final score of a championship game is sealed. A second is time enough to avert disaster in many situations. In a second a .220 bullet can travel 4665 feet. In a few seconds we can do or say something to someone that can take days, weeks, years, or a lifetime to pay for, ask forgiveness for, but we can never unsay or undo it.
In a second, “the silver cord can be loosed, the golden bowl can be broken, the pitcher can be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern..” (Solomon)
We die—our deposit of time is fully spent.
“Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.” — Ecclesiastes 12:6-7
In a second we go from the temporal realm where time, the measure of life, was invented. Death identified its existence and the necessity of measuring it. We go into the eternal realm where time is a useless concept. The measurement of time does not have any purpose in heaven, but people will be constantly aware of time in hell.
One second is all it takes to place a drop of water on one’s tongue in eternal hell. The wealthiest people on earth would give all their wealth and possessions (if they could) for that one second of relief in hell.
It becomes brilliantly clear that we should be accountable to God for our deposit of time—our life. No matter how much we deny His existence, or deny His claim on us, or choose to be autonomous and justify it in our minds, we will have every second of our lives laid out before us when we stand before God’s Judgment Throne.
If we understand and learn while we are young the importance of time spent, and choose to spend it according to God’s will, we are wise and will accomplish many things that will register in eternity. If we do not understand or learn the lesson by the time we enter the period of dwindling time, we may become a tragic witness of life spent in the maintenance of ignorance and waste. There are not many sights sadder than witnessing an old individual that is bitter and hardened by years of resentment.
It is not a waste of time to care about other people, to encourage, lend a hand, give unselfishly, to be kind, speak encouragement, to love, make a child feel special, to listen to the pain of a broken heart, or witness to someone for whom eternity will not be generous.
Time is not wasted standing strong against advancing evil, exposing darkness, praying, feeding the lambs of Jesus, and accomplishing everything we know to be God’s will.
I’ve spent nearly 72 years of time. Not a day goes by that I am not aware of my remaining deposit of time. I choose to spend it less and less for my interests, and more and more for the benefit of people’s eternal souls.
It is not often earthly rewarding to obey God’s will, but we must lay hold on eternal life. It is a battle that we will never stop fighting until we reach eternity. It is a good fight, the battle against the great waster of time—self.
Until God is on the throne of our hearts, faith withers, the eternal perspective fades, and we cannot understand the battle and how to constantly win it.
The immeasurable blessing is that the Believer’s lives do not have to end that way. We have redemption, the Word of God, the indwelling Holy Spirit, communion with the Father, the measure of faith, and all else that we need to overcome, endure, and win the prize—eternal life.
Whatever we may go through on earth to remain faithful to God it will be worth it to never again need or spend time.
“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.” — 1 Timothy 6:12
“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” — Colossians 3:1-4