Guest Post: Focus on Time
Guest Writer: Bets
The disastrous incident at Martin Place on the 15th December 2014, was for me a shock. Naively I had felt that hostage situations with Islamic overtures occurred in other countries. The truth was shocking – such events can happen anywhere.
As the hours of the incident ticked by, I started to think about the “what ifs” – “what if I was in that café, or a situation similar?” It is sobering enough for anyone, but it sure made me think.
In the Bible Christians are instructed: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” (Romans 12 v 1). So our lives are a sacrifice? What does that mean? Can it mean that I give up control of my life and live under the Lord’s direction? Can it mean that I am to be as a light shining in a dark place – even one as dark as a hostage situation?
I’m sure the answer to these questions is YES! The Lord Jesus Christ came down from His perfect, holy home, to this world filled with filth, sin and hate and shone such a light that it has not gone out – even over two thousand years later! Through much persecution, neglect and sheer ignorance, His influence can still be felt and changes lives daily.
So what does this mean to me? I’m just a 30-something year old mother with two young children living in a busy city and getting about life, right? Yes, but there are a few responsibilities we all as Christians have:
- Romans 12 v 1 still means giving our all to Him – life, abilities, time, money – the lot.
- We are to give ourselves cheerfully – “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” (2 Corinthians 9 v 6-8) – and trust Him for strength and energy to go on.
- We should give ourselves heartily – “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for [fn] you serve the Lord Christ” (Colossians 3 v 23-2)
- We should not be fearful of what may occur in the future – “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1 v 7)
- Remembering that most important we are the Lord’s – “For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's” (Romans 14 v 8)
And all of this makes me think of something that has been concerning me of late. It is called “me-time”. Some of the shoppers in Martin Place were having some “me-time” – a break to have a hot drink and just relax. We are constantly told that we should have “me-time” (that we are owed it even) and this is also taught in Christian circles.
Is it wrong? Well, I think we should stop and look at the Lord’s life on earth. When did the Lord have time to relax and get away from it all? Many times it seems He was attempting to move away to spend time in prayer or give His disciples a rest – and the crowds followed Him for more teaching or healing! But He continually gave His life heartily and with compassion persisted in doing the work His Father had given Him.
I can think of one incident where the Lord was left, even His disciples falling asleep rather than being with Him. You recall the Garden of Gethsemane? He was alone – but we could not call this “me-time”! He was in an agony over the coming hours – for us…
So should “me-time” be a priority? Do I need time away from my responsibilities? Should I resent the time taken up in bringing up my children so I can only fall into bed exhausted? Is this not my sacrifice? My service? For Him who have His life? And even for sinners?
That is not to say one should never have time alone, or apart from life’s responsibilities to relax and recharge! But the right focus must be in place – life is not about ME and My will, but about HIM and HIS will. The Lord Jesus said “I can of Myself do nothing… because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.” (John 5 v 30). May we have the same enthusiasm as Paul – “I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3 v 14). And remember the Lord’s promises in (Matthew 11 v 28-30): “Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
Guest Writer: Betsy (my cousin) is a young mum of two gorgeous young children which she has just started to home school. She is a busy lady as keeper of her home, a wonderful helper to her husband, but also takes care of her sister and father.