Celebrating 80 Years Pt.1: The Stewardship of Time
Celebrating 80 Years of Briercrest
Check back monthly to enjoy a six part series of devotional excerpts from Briercrest founding President Dr. Henry Hildebrand's book "Our Gracious God and Loving Heavenly Father: Book 4". If you would like a free copy of this book please contact our Alumni Engagement Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read: Ephesians 5:1-21
“Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16
Lord, teach us the value of time. Decisions made in time determine our destiny. Therefore, let us treat time with respect. Benjamin Franklin said, “Time is the stuff of which life is made.” Managing our time, or ourselves in time, is being a good steward of time. It is investing our time well so that the most is accomplished toward what God wants us to do.
Dr. Tenney, my professor at Wheaton College, said that stewarding time well “is learning to live by priority rather than by pressure.” The Old Testament teaches, “There is a time for everything and a season for every activity…and the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure” (Ecclesiastes 3:1; 8:5). Yesterday is a cancelled check; tomorrow only a promissory note. A wise man’s heart discerns both time and judgement, be it the quiet time, worship time, fellowship time, work or recreation time.
The very nature of time demands that we manage ourselves to use it judicially. Time cannot be stopped or stored. Time cannot be expanded or contracted. Time is invincible and irreplaceable. Managing ourselves then, as it relates to time, is choosing the best things to do in the time available. Rather than boxing ourselves up, it frees us to accomplish more with what God has given us. It prevents us from trying to do too much or doing the wrong thing. It also helps us to do the important things and not just the things we like or that are easy.
This can be realized only if we schedule our time wisely. To do this effectively, we must plan long-range. “So I run straight to the goal with purpose in every step” (1 Corinthians 9:26, NLT). “But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way” (1 Corinthians 14:40). We must learn to follow a schedule and stay with it.
There will be numerous interruptions, circumstances, people, and problems that will seek to force us off our schedule. Effective living requires us to be accountable to God for time. Steve Hope advised, “As a spirit-filled Christian prays through the day ahead of time, he unleashes the potential for letting God walk him through each hour according to His specific direction.” Only with the help of the Spirit of God can this be realized.
Little drops of water, little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean, and the beauteous land.
And the little moments, humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages of Eternity.
We have this moment to hold in our hands,
And to touch and to feel as it slips through our fingers like sand.
Yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never come
But we have this moment today.
Time – if you redeem it now – is yours for all eternity.