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Summary: 1 of 4 messages about Time. This message is how we can become a Master of Time by following the example of Jesus. Graphics available by email.

It’s About Time

Time Masters

December 31, 2006

Time Masters

“Our lifetime is seventy years or, if we are strong, eighty years. But the years are full of hard work and pain. They pass quickly, and then we are gone… Teach us how short our lives really are so that we may be wise.”

Psalm 90:10-12

It’s About TIME

We are running full tilt, in the red zone, and on empty. It’s no wonder that marriages are frayed, children are stressed, and the dog is neurotic. We live in a day when the economy demands that productivity rates climbs upward even as the quality of life spirals downward.

Computers were supposed to save time and paper. They don’t. Washing machines and vacuum cleaners were supposed to take the drudgery out of the work at home. It hasn’t happened yet. Packaged and frozen foods were supposed to make it easy to have family meals. Nope, that’s not happening either.

Time is not the enemy. We can, with God’s help, make friends with time and enjoy abundant life. Jesus shows us how to live life by becoming the master of time.

A Lifetime In Minutes

Dr. Leslie Weatherhead, in his book, Time for God has a mathematically calculated schedule which compares a lifetime of “three score years and ten” with the hours of a single day from seven in the morning to eleven at night.

If your age is 15,

the time is 10:25 a.m.

If your age is 20,

the time is 11:34 a.m.

If your age is 25,

the time is 12:42 p.m.

If your age is 30,

the time is 1:51 p.m.

If your age is 35,

the time is 3:00 p.m.

If your age is 40,

the time is 4:08 p.m.

If your age is 45,

the time is 5:16 p.m.

If your age is 50,

the time is 6:25 p.m.

If your age is 55,

the time is 7:34 p.m.

If your age is 60,

the time is 8:42 p.m.

If your age is 65,

the time is 9:51 p.m.

If your age is 70,

the time is 11:00 p.m.”

Tan, P. L. (1996, c1979). Encyclopedia of 7700 illustrations : A treasury of illustrations, anecdotes, facts and quotations for pastors, teachers and Christian workers. Garland TX: Bible Communications.

Jesus was the Master of Time

Runner with torch

The Greeks, well known for their competitive spirit, invented the art of competitive running. There were many races that were run during the course of their frequent Olympic competitions. We are familiar with the marathon and high hurdles as well as the myriad of short course races they also ran.

But there was one race which held periodically outside of the Olympic competition that was as highly regarded perhaps even more so than all the other competitive races. This race was called the torch relay.

The race which spawned the modern day Olympic torch race and ceremony, often took place in the streets and alleys of Athens. Ten or twelve men would assemble before the city fathers, each carrying a torch, a simple bound bundle of twigs inset in a hollow containers. The twigs were coated with tar and then, one by one, each torch was lit from the same flame.

On their marks, the runners were sent out as a group and guided along a course that had been laid out among the city streets on which obstacles and barriers had been placed. The object of the race was to cross the finish line with your torch still lit. You could not stop and put the torch down or prop it anywhere. You had to hold it high and run with as much integrity as possible.

In this race the victory seldom went to the fastest or the strongest. This was a race that depended upon timing and rhythm. To keep that torch lit required the ability to hold it properly, shielded from objects along the route and held away from the wind. If you ran too fast, you might put out the flame. If you ran to slow, the tar might burn up completely before you reached the finish line. If a runner’s torch flamed out, there was no relighting it. He was forced to drop out.

The winner of the race was the first man to cross the finish line with his torch still lit. Winning was dependent upon endurance and timing, not speed.

As I study Jesus’ life I am amazed that He never seemed to be in a hurry. Although He was doing the most important job in history (redeeming the world), and although He knew He only had a few years to do it, He never ran. He made time to consider the flowers and the birds of the air. He had time to put his hands on the little children and bless them.

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