Making the Best Use of the Time

8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light
9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true),
10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.
11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.
12 For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret.
13 But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible,
14 for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,
16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.
17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. Ephesians 5:8-17 (ESV)

Have you ever taken a time management course? Did you learn how to speed time up? Or slow it down? Or produce more of it? If you know me well you will know that the concept of ‘time management’ is a pet peeve; yet the text above does make a salient point concerning time. Essentially, we are instructed to make the best use of the time we are allowed to have; be that time at home, work, recreation, relational, whatever pursuits we undertake. This idea was driven home as I sat in a Dentist’s waiting room while a friend I had driven there was undergoing oral surgery. The first hour had been spent out in the truck reading a book I’ve been trying to finish; then, as the procedure was to be done in an hour, I went inside. On entering, the little ‘no weapons’ sign was noted, probably not a bad idea, given the history of dentistry. Then, as I sat for another hour and a half, it seemed the weapons ban was aimed at preserving the overhead speakers, as ’70’s music droned on in an unbroken stream (no offense intended, if you are a disco fan). Being exposed to pop music of any period for an extended time is an education in culture, and the lesson is that our days are sometimes as shallow as the lyrics we listen to on FM music loops. The challenge of making the best use of our time, indeed of our times, is to face each 24 hour period with eternity in mind. Once we manage to do that, then we are ready to face weeks, months, lifetimes, with our eternal time-print in mind. Let’s close with a cliché worth repeating. Only one life, t’will soon be past; only what’s done for Christ will last!