A couple of weeks ago, a friend shared her desire to use her time more wisely. As she was asking for prayer and accountability it really made me think…. “how am I using my time?” While contemplating this question, I discovered that we spend our time on what we value. These values are not always righteous and holy, and these unholy values come from sin within our hearts.
There are so many things that can war for our time throughout the day. There are good things like (when thinking of myself): spending time in the Word, caring for my husband some particular way, structuring my daughter’s day well by providing her loving instruction and care, caring for my home, caring for a friend or someone in need. Then there are many ways I am tempted to NOT use my time wisely (watching TV or allowing my little one to watch more TV than she should---what a temptation for me!). And then there are all those gray areas….writing a blog entry can be so good for me. Sometimes it is so helpful just to process my thoughts through writing. However, this is NOT a good use of time if I am neglecting mommying responsibilities to do it. Checking email is good and necessary, but there are also times when it is unwise to do so---doing laundry may be more important at that time.
It is very sobering when I think of what my little girl sees as she goes throughout her day. What does she think I value? Does she think I value the TV, or the computer, or the phone? Does she think I value Jesus, and her, and caring for my family and others? When I remember that she will most likely value what I value it really makes me pause and evaluate our days. What does she see that Mommy loves most? Our family is heading into major transitions. As we weather all these changes (be they difficult or easy), does she see Mommy persevere by the help of the Holy Spirit to remember what counts for eternity? Or does she see Mommy take an easy road…. “it is a hard day so watch one more TV show, Cara.”
The motives of the heart are deep waters and sometimes it takes time to wade through them. It wasn’t until I read this expert from “Cheque Book of the Bank of Faith” by CH Spurgeon that I felt some light was shed into my heart.
He says, “The cure for envy lies in living under a constant sense of divine presence, worshipping God and communicating with him all the day long, however long the day may seem. True religion lifts the soul into a higher region, where the judgment becomes more clear, and the desires are more elevated. The more of heaven there is in our lives, the less of earth we covet. The fear of God casts out envy of men.”
Spurgeon communicates very well what the cure for envy is, but isn’t this the cure for any sin that is in our hearts? When we are constantly communing with the Lord, when we are treasuring Jesus and what He treasured, when we are abiding in Him, our perspective shifts and we see things through an eternal gaze---we see things as He sees them. It all goes back to “taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.” Am I setting my mind on truth? Am I in prayer, constantly running to the assistance of my loving Heavenly Father? Am I remembering that I can do NOTHING in my own strength and that I am in desperate need ALWAYS of my Savior? DO I covet the things of this world? Do I long for an easier road that the world tells me I deserve? Am I insisting on my own way and neglect dying to myself? Am I imitating Jesus? Do I love what He loves?
Oh yes! I am in major need of a heaping host of heaven in my life. I need more and more of Jesus to fill up and cast out my sinful, selfish desires. And the wonderful news is that Jesus is ready and willing to grant that desire. Yes, He is my able Helper. He is everything that I am not and everything that I need. He is there to offer forgiveness and grace when I fail and strength and joy to persevere. He gives the gift of time. And He will lovingly guide my steps in the using of it.