“Therefore, be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16).
We have all been given the gift of time. The standard by which our time is measured is the same for us all, seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years. In the verses that we just read, we are challenged by the author to make the most of this precious gift that we have been given. In the movie Gone With the Wind, a plaque at the gate of the Twelve Oaks plantation read, “Do not squander time for that is the stuff life is made of.”
Sometimes we need to be reminded just how precious time is. A few years ago, I was hospitalized for shortness of breath at the Lutheran Hospital in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. It was suspected that I might have had a heart attack. While lying in my bed in the Cardiac ICU, I was asked by my attending physician, “If your heart should stop beating in the middle of the night, what do you want us to do?” That is a very focusing question. It is a question that causes one to evaluate the time behind them as well as the limited time that lays out in front of them.
We often talk about being wise stewards of our material resources but how often do we talk about being wise stewards of our time? Thus, the apostle’s admonition, “…make the most of your time.”
I start most of my days reading from The Valley of Vision: Prayers of the Puritans. The prayer that I read yesterday ended with these words, “May I speak each word as if it be my last word and walk each step as if it were my final step. If my life should end today, let this be my best day.”
Now, I don’t want to sound morbid here but if you knew that today would be your last day, do you think that you might make some adjustments to your last twenty-four hours on earth? I believe you would, because I know that I would. So, my question is this, “What is it that keeps us from living each day, speaking each word, taking each step as if they were our final ones?” I believe that each one of us need to contemplate that question and then come up with an answer. I’m in the process of sorting it out because I truly would like to live as today was my last day and therefore be determined to make it my best day.