Summary: This is about time management.
How would you like to receive a check everyday? It would be the same amount as everyone else in the world. No matter how you spent it, you would get the same amount the next day and the next day. Wouldn’t that be nice? Well each and every one of us gets the same amount of time everyday. Each of us has 24 hours in a day. That’s 1440 minutes, and 86,400 seconds. How do you spend you 86,400 seconds?
This month we are going to be talking about the idea of stewardship. When it comes to stewardship, some people reach to protect their wallet, but stewardship goes way beyond money. It includes all of our resources. This week we are going to talk about our time. Next week, we are going to look at stewardship of the Church’s calling. The third week will cover how much God really wants from us. Then the fourth week, we will get around to money. I have been here almost a year now, and I have not yet preached a sermon on money. This will be my first at the end of the month. Contrary to popular, preachers don’t always talk about money.
Time is such a strange thing. It goes at the same speed. It neither speeds up nor slows down. An hour is always 60 minutes, and a minute is always 60 seconds. There are always 24 hours in a day, except when we go off and on daylight savings time. Then you have one 25-hour day and a 23-hour day, so it equals out. There is no way to get more time. You can’t buy and sell time. Every single person on the planet has the same amount of time in the day. The rich don’t have more and the poor don’t have less. The old man in India has the same amount of time as the young girl in Canada. No matter how wise or foolish we are with our time, we get the same amount every day. You can’t put time in the bank for another day. Every day we are presented with another 86,400 seconds to use. God issues us a check each day for 86,400 seconds. How do you spend it?
Turn with me to Romans 13.
Read Romans 13:11-14.
The Apostle Paul confronts us here with the proper use of time. He challenges us to stop and think how we are spending our time. The first thing Paul reminds us is that our…
I. Time is short.
Last week we looked James chapter 4 where he said, “You do not know what tomorrow will bring.” James then compared our life to a mist or a puff of smoke.
Paul is telling us the same thing here. Our time is short. While each of us gets the same amount of time each day, that won’t last forever. Because our time is short, Paul tells us that…
A. It’s time to wake up.
When we are awake we are aware of what we are doing. When we are asleep we aren’t aware. We aren’t aware that we are snoring or tossing and turning.
How many of you talk in your sleep? Tammy says that I do occasionally. Several years ago, I read John Grisham’s book The Firm. They later made it into a movie starring Tom Cruise. The book is about a young lawyer named Mitch who gets a job with a prestigious Memphis law firm. He later finds out that the firm is corrupt to the core. I read this book just a few months after starting to work for a law firm. I must have had some vivid dreams about it. Tammy told me one morning that I had been shouting, “Be careful Mitch. Mitch!” It was the weirdest thing. Tammy thought I was loosing it.
When we are asleep, we have no idea what is going on around us. Paul is saying that it is time for us to wake up. Paul isn’t talking about physical sleep. He is talking about spiritual sleep. Spiritual sleep manifests itself in indifference to what’s going on in the world around us. When we, as Christians and the Church, fall asleep bad things happen. In the earlier part of the 20th century, the Church was the focal point of the community, but somewhere along the way the Church fell asleep and was pushed to the margins of life. Church, even for many Christian, becomes a mere social activity that we engage in only when it fits our schedule.
We must wake from our sleep because…
B. Our salvation is getting closer.
When Paul says that our salvation nearer now than when we first believed, he means our ultimate salvation when Jesus returns. Remember, the first century Church lived with the expectation that Jesus would return at any time. We must also have that same expectation. That doesn’t mean we sell our house and go sit on a hill and wait for him. It means that our lives should be lived in such a way that we wouldn’t be embarrassed if Jesus came back.