Wednesday, January 4, 2012


2012 A Year of Thanksgiving and Praise. 
Day 4: I'm thankful for time.
We look at time as something that's limited. And, in a way, I suppose it is. But many people complain that they don't have enough time. Actually, we all have exactly the same number of hours in a day. It's really boils down to how we spend them.
I can fritter away my time, or I can use my time wisely.
In fact, time is an incredibly valuable asset because of it's limited nature. You can't get more time. When you spend time, it's gone forever. If I spend money, I can always make more. Time isn't that way.
This is leap year. So this year, I will have 8,784 hours to spend. Of course, as I'm writing this, I have already spent 79 1/2 of those hours. Did I spend them wisely? Some of them I did. Some of them were spent working. Some sleeping. Some studying God's word. Some making memories with family...
How are you spending your time?
I believe the important things to spend time on are developing a relationship with God. This year in my private devotional time, I'm spending a month in each book of the New Testament. I've rushed through the Bible before, following the "Bible in a Year" reading plans. But, honestly, I felt as though I was rushing, and not necessarily gleaning any information. I was just pressing forward to get in my quota for the day.
This month, I'm reading the Gospel of Mathew. Some days I read several chapters. This morning I read one. I'm looking up word meanings. When I get finished with Mathew, I'll go through it again. Next month I'll read the Gospel of Mark.
I'm also reading "Hello. My Name is God." By Jeremy Pearsons. I very interesting book about the different traits of God.
I don't think there is any more important way to spend my time than in getting to know Him and in developing a closer relationship with Him.
Another important thing to spend time on is developing relationships with family and friends. This is an area that I will admit has suffered over the years, because I have more often spent time working in a job rather than spending time with my family.
An unexpected and potentially life-threatening illness last Fall has changed my priorities a bit. I am now making sure I fit in family time. Going to concerts, going to the theater, just hanging out together, and creating new traditions.
For years I kept putting things off and saying "maybe next year" to things my son and I wanted to do. When you don't know whether or not you will have a next year, you realize how important it is to take advantage of every moment and do things now rather than putting them off.
Time is something we can't recapture. Time spent with family and friends creates the memories that we will treasure as we grow older. It's too important to put off until some unknown date in the future.
Speaking of the future, spending time imaging and creating the future is also very important. Life just happens. Success, however, is never an accident. It is the result of correct thinking, planning and taking action. This should be done in every area of our lives... going right back to our relationships with God and others. We need to imagine what that will look like, then plan and set aside the time to make it happen, and then take the appropriate action to bring those images into reality.
This needs to also happen with our health. See yourself the way you want to be... healthy, whole, complete. Want to run in a marathon? Then envision yourself doing just that. Want to be an excellent tennis player? Then see yourself being that. Once you have the vision, then you can make a plan. By knowing where you want to be, you can determine the steps you need to take to get there.
You obviously can't run a marathon tomorrow if you can't run a block today. But, if you plan to run a block today and then slowly and steadily increase the distance you run each week, you can train your body to go the distance and run a marathon.
We can also do this with our finances. You may be barely getting by today, but you can envision yourself wealthy and work toward that goal. Start by tracking your spending, creating a budget, saving more and spending less, and making more so that you have even more to save. You will, if you have a vision, set goals and then work steadily toward them, have what you desire.
Time. How do you use it?

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