(The following is the August 31 devotional from my Next Step Devotions book. Before reading it, I suggest you read Ephesians 5 and pay close attention to verses 15-21.)
Each of us has 24 hours per day. How do we use them? Paul wrote: “Pay careful attention, then, to how you live – not as unwise people but as wise – making the most of the time, because the days are evil” (vv. 15-16).
We can’t work every waking hour, nor should we. Our bodies and minds need rest. When giving the Ten Commandments, God said, “You are to labor six days and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God” (Ex. 20:9-10). Jesus’ earthly life also demonstrated the need for physical rest and quiet time with God. However, it’s possible to occasionally let laziness or ungodly desires win the day, failing to use our time in Christ-honoring ways.
There is work to be done for God’s kingdom. God wants all his children to serve as laborers for his harvest, and we should willingly work, eager for our Bridegroom to find us faithful and ready when he returns. That is why we must put thought and effort into managing life’s everyday responsibilities and our work for God’s kingdom.
We need God’s help redeeming the time daily. Paul mentions our need to be wise and understand the Lord’s will. Two verses to remember as we seek God’s wisdom include: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Prov. 9:10) and “Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God” (Rom. 12:2). We will redeem the time best for God’s glory when we seek his mind and wisdom in making and executing our daily plans.
Review recent entries from your daily calendar or to-do list. How well have you used your time? If you don’t use any daily planning tool, research options (such as Microsoft To Do, Good ToDo, or printed daily planners) and experiment with them until you find a good fit.