What’s your New Year’s resolution? Time is without a doubt the most precious commodity that we have. Especially around this time of year I think a lot of us stop and consider what we want to do with the time that we’ve got left, because we want our lives to count. We want this year to be the best it can be. We want to feel we are making a contribution that is worthwhile and necessary to those around us! As Christians, we want our lives to make a difference for the cause of Christ on this earth. If this describes where you are today, this little story is for you.
A famous musician, when he was only 14 or 15 years old, was asked by his music teacher “How long do you practice each day?” The student proudly said, “I always practice at least four to five hours everyday without any breaks in between.” But instead of commending him the teacher gave him a very stern warning and said, “When you are older and working at making a living, you will rarely have as much as five hours at a time to practice. So if you want to have a productive life, you’re going to have discipline yourself to use the shortest snatches of time and make the most of them. The teacher then said, “You’re greatest opportunities lie in what you do with the tidbits of time left in your day.” That was a very wise teacher! Someone once said that “Fifteen minutes a day devoted to one definite study will make one a master in 12 years.” What you do with a little means a lot!
When we study the lives of people who are really making a difference on this earth, we find that they all have one thing in common. They do a lot with a little. Instead of wasting that 15 or 20 minutes, they make the most of it. For example, the archbishop of Canterbury, by the name of Michael Ramsey was once asked when he found the time to write his books. He said, “Monday I get about a quarter of an hour, Tuesday, I get about 10 minutes, Wednesday is rather better, I get a half hour, Thursday is not very good, but I still get ten minutes.” Well, you get the idea. What he did with a little produced a lot of fruit. This is really one of the blessed roads to productivity and success and you guessed it, this principle did not originate with the archbishop of Canterbury, or the wise teacher I talked about earlier. It came from God!!
When there is a principle that brings something good into your life, it always comes from God because that’s exactly what He loves to do. He loves to pour the good things into our lives. God says in Ephesians 5:14, “Awake you that sleep and arise from the dead and Christ shall give you light. See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time because the days are evil.” That word “redeeming” in the Greek language means to literally “buy up the opportune times” or in other words, making the most of every opportunity. This doesn’t mean we’re not going to stop and smell the roses or take a nap from time to time, but it does mean that we can make every effort to be better lights and witnesses for Jesus. Like the song says, “Little is much when God is in it.”
The next thing we need to consider is, “what are we going to do with those precious snatches of time in our day?” We need direction! We need purpose! We need....God! The Bible says “The steps of a good man are directed and established of the Lord when he (she...we) delights in His way.” (Psalm 37:23) The first thing we need to do is “delight in His way.” When we delight in God’s way we’re in the Word, we’re “tuned in” through prayer and we’re spiritually “movin’ down the road.” (Don’t forget, God can only steer a vehicle that’s moving!) That also means that we’re not going to be launching out on our own making our own footprints. Rather, we are going to carefully search for God’s footprints and then we’re going to place our feet in them and follow them. Quite frankly, I’ve discovered that it’s best to leave the “trail blazing” to Jesus, because our own trails can take us out on a limb...shaky ones at that! Someone once said, “I shall never be able to go too fast if the Lord is in front of me, and I can never go too slowly if I follow Him always everywhere.”
Many people have asked us, “How do you know that an impression is really from God?” In a nutshell, if the impression is in harmony with the Word of God, you can bank on it. And if you find yourself thinking about a project over and over again, and your feet just burn to go get started, this is a good signal.
On the other hand, perhaps you don’t feel any particular motivation to do something to glorify God. If this is you, it’s time to get on your knees! The whole purpose you were created is to be fruitful and glorifying, a blessing to many! Zechariah 8:13 says, “...you shall be a blessing, fear not, but let your hands be strong.” Our God is a changer! He can transform the mediocre into the magnificent! He can change a couch-potato into a front-line warrior for Christ!
God is looking for YOU! “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth to show Himself strong in behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him.” Are you willing? Are you ready? If so, read on! “Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth, shall you not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert!” (Isaiah 43:19)
Your New Year is guaranteed to be “Happy” when Jesus is “front and center!” He’s waiting, No...longing to fulfill His plan and His promises in YOU! Happy New Year!!