The Waste of Time
This year I turned 65. All of a sudden those T-shirts that say “Growing old got here faster than I expected” start to resonate. I find myself the oldest person in many rooms I walk into. Working around the house causes a lot more cramps and aches than it once did.
This is not a complaint. It’s more an alert for those coming behind to listen to the clock. Tick, Tock. We all know that we will “not get out alive” but that day always seems so far away that we need not think about it. I’m asking you to think about it.
Especially think about the phrase: “A waste of time.” What is waste?
In manufacturing industries “to waste” is an important part of daily activities. Boring holes in an engine block is necessary and the sooner a mechanic “wastes” the parts of the block not needed, the better. Same for a sculptor; the sooner he wastes the marble that’s not necessary, the better. But most of the time, “waste” represents a loss of some sort. In any case, “waste” is something that’s not going to be used by the person generating the waste.
Concentrating on the waste aspect as applied to time is important for everyone, but perhaps most important for the young. It’s easy to teach the idea of compounding to the average adolescent but have they considered that we cannot compound time? No effort will add days to the time God has allotted us.
But this is not to say that there’s not a compounding effect for early efforts. If a child learns obedience at an early age, it frees up time to do something useful that would otherwise be spent re-learning the importance of obedience. One of the great misunderstandings about disobedience is the loss of time as consequences are suffered.
In just the same way, early learning of biblical truth, biblical application of God’s Law, and biblical wisdom will compound our efforts in building God’s kingdom. It is for His glory that we’re placed here and investment of our time will bear interest. Re-read the parable of the talents and substitute the word “time” for talents. Wise investment of time yields results. Burying it is a waste.
Of course, it’s never too late to do the Lord’s work. Let’s keep at it. Build a Godly business; visit the widow and orphan; teach and correct the children in your neighborhood. We can do these things at any age and they will be pleasing in God’s sight. It is the redeeming of time.
But you youngsters especially, please listen to the clock. The sooner you hear the tick tock, the less time you will waste.
~John Bingaman, August 2019