daily devotional

Today, you have been given something more precious than any riches. Something that cannot be bought or borrowed, but it can be stolen. You woke up this morning with the gift of TIME. Time to live.

Sadly the gift of time has grown old to most of us and instead of immense gratitude, we woke up with dread. We woke up with the desire to just sleep a little more. We woke up with regret that it was once again Monday and the weekend is over. We woke up thinking of all we have to do. And dang if we’re not totally missing it … we’re missing the absolute gift this is.

My sister, YOU HAVE TIME TODAY!!!!!

Others have begged for this time and didn’t get it. Some have bargained and tried to make deals for this time, and didn’t live to see it. But you received it. TIME.

Now the question becomes, how will you use it? Will you protect it? Will you invest it? Will you enjoy it?

Today is simply time. It is hours that turn into minutes, minutes that are given to you to live as you wish. With every minute of today you will make decisions. You’re continually deciding how to spend this precious and priceless gift you have been given. A paragraph from the book “The Best Yes” puts it like this:

The decisions we make dictate the schedules we keep. The schedules we keep determine the lives we live. The lives we live determine how we spend our souls. So, this isn’t just about finding time. This is about honoring God with the time we have.

How will you honor God with the time you have today? Doesn’t he expect a return on this day of life he has given you? Didn’t he give it to you for a purpose?

Jesus often taught by telling stories. One of the stories he told is found in Matthew 25: 14-30 titled “The Parable of the Talents”. It’s a story of a master who gave 3 of his servants a measure of money, called a talent, to watch over while he went away. When the master returned he asked his servants to account for what they had been given. Two of them invested and doubled the money. But the third was afraid of losing the money, so he hid it and returned to the master exactly what he had been given, unused. The master was furious over this fearful way of living and took from him the little he had and gave it to the ones who had used what they had been given.

Maybe you don’t feel like God has plopped a pile of gold in your lap, but he sure has given you the priceless gift of time. And just like the master who returned and asked for an account on what he had given, our Master will ask us what we did with the hours of today. What decisions did you make today? What schedules did you keep? How did you spend your soul today?

Will you waste this time?

Oh how we’re guilty of living, but not really living. We’re here, but not fully here. We’re watching others live their lives on our little screens, while our own lives our begging for our attention and getting little.

A few weeks ago I sat on the coast here in Key Largo watching the most magnificent fireworks over the bay. A crowd had gathered, and the majority were watching the magnificent bursts of color in the night sky through their cell phone screens as they carefully documented every moment on their live videos and stories. But, the man beside me really took that to a whole new level … as he sat in this beautiful place in the presence of a show in the sky, he sat on his phone, scrolling Instagram, watching the fireworks videos of his friends, missing the live show right in front of him.

Oh my goodness, it was the most ridiculous thing … yet, don’t we all do it in our own way? We’re missing the live show and unfolding of our life because our attention is on something else. Life is happening all around us and we’re numb to it.

Don’t waste this. The enemy has been stealing the gift of your time by making you believe there’s something better somewhere else. No, this is it sister. Right here, right now. Don’t waste this.

I’ve learned I can’t be trusted with my cell phone. I just can’t. In moments of disconnect I dive into the distraction and I get lost there. And while I’m lost there, I’m missing once in a lifetime offerings happening in my real life. So I no longer take my phone with me. I leave it in the bedroom. I hide it in the truck. I use my husband’s phone for a quick photo, and I’m done.

If you can’t be trusted, I encourage you to take a drastic step. We’ve been blindly making a trade none of us will be happy with in the end.

Protect your time. Be intentional with your yeses and your nos. The decisions you make are taking you somewhere. Are they taking you towards the life you were created for, or are they taking you on the backroad detours where you will surely get lost and stuck? How you spend this day is an exchange for the priceless gift of time given to you by God. Make it worth it.

Ephesians 5: 15 “So be careful how you live; be mindful of your steps.”

Be MINDFUL of your steps. Each day is a step in your life, and they’re all leading you somewhere. While today may have shown up looking like a Monday in the middle of waiting for something else to unfold, don’t be fooled. This day is a treasure. There are others who would give everything they own to have it. They would trade everything for the time you are taking for granted. Please wake up my friend. See what you have. Be mindful with it. Protect this day.

But remember the story Jesus told about the servant who was afraid of losing what he had been entrusted with, so he hid it. How did the master feel about his fearful way of living? The master was furious! He expected what he had given to be invested, not saved. Used, not hidden. God expects the same of us today with the gift of time he has given us.

No more fearful living, hiding out from the dangers of life, afraid of what could happen. Life is short. It is here one day, and gone the next. It can’t be saved up. It can’t be hidden away and protected. It is here for you to use, to invest, to do all you can do with your time.

If you’re waiting for better days, you’re wasting the investment of time God has made in you. If you’re saving up your best attitude and greatest energy for vacation, oh girl, you’re screwing this thing up! LIFE IS HERE and LIFE IS NOW. Time is all you have, and that time is passing.

Ephesians 5: 16 “Take full advantage of every day as you spend your life for his purposes. ”

How can you take full advantage of THIS day? Yes, this Monday. This Monday with its uncertainties and imperfections. This Monday with its work and tasks. This day was given to you for a purpose. That purpose wasn’t to watch others live their lives on your screen. That purpose wasn’t to show up at a job you hate and exchange your time for money. That purpose wasn’t to be overwhelmed by the kids you once prayed for, annoyed by the husband you chose, burdened by the house you bought, or complaining about the reality you created.

Pull your head out girl! The enemy has been twisting your blessings and convincing you this is all a chore. This is your life. Your one and only life. Misery is optional, but it’s never a good option. Do your work, count your blessings, open your eyes and see the opportunity of time you have been given.

Be here for it, fully here for it. Make a good exchange for the hours of time you have been given today. May you spend each one knowing how absolutely precious and priceless it really is. And when the Master asks how you spent your time today, may you have something really great to show for it. May you be able to recount all the beauty your eyes saw. All the little moments your soul was present for. All the blessings you counted. All the love you invested. All the choices you made that brought a good return on his investment of time.

Yes, be a good steward of the gift of today. How you spend a day is how you spend your life.

(Song: “Spend a Life” by David Dunn)