“See…that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil” (Eph. 5:15-16).
Would you agree we waste a lot of time? Usually, we point our finger at those who procrastinate to do the things for which they are responsible. We tell them, “Stop wasting time. Get to it!” However, an equally insidious way in which we waste time, and probably far more common, is investing our energy and pursuits in things that really don’t matter in the long run.
We waste time by pursing a path of selfish goals with the aim of getting to the top and running over anyone who gets in our way. We waste time worrying too much about what others think of us. We relive past conversations because we’re afraid we said the wrong thing and may project future fears. Also, we waste time when we measure our lives by how busy our schedule is instead of the richness of our relationship.
Paul reminds us that every moment counts. We are in a visible struggle between forces of good and evil. Time is our greatest resource in our fight. It allows us to connect with Our Commander. It allows us to carry out His directions. Far too often, we don’t think we have the time.
Our goal is not to just be busy. We redeem time by seeing every moment as a gift from God to be used to glorify and honor Him. Our every pursuit is with a view to honoring Him. Our every purpose is to bring Him glory. In order to have a positive impact on those we love, we strive to use every moment of every day for the good of others.
Redeeming the time requires single-eyed devotion. We must give ourselves to it, be passionate about it, and make it the central part of our soul. Strait or narrow, doesn't allow wide. It is restricted (Matt. 7:13-14). That says we can't wonder all over creation, doing good and well what we please. We have to bring all our energies, intellect, and skills, and straighten them in one single direction. It’s the power that can be resolved in a day. Every bit of our energy is directly, wholly, and absolutely in the direction of His will.
Yes, it may be fun to walk all over the road, wonder here and there. There will be many companions. But a little boy lost in the woods doesn't enjoy looking at the flowers. Redeeming the time requires a commitment, a purpose to set our heart on one thing: pleasing Him by doing His will. That is something all of us can do, if we will.
“I find that doing of the will of God leaves me no time for disputing about His plans.” (George MacDonald)