Daily Devotionals

Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life

Devotional: June 26th

Killing Time

During my sophomore year at Johnson Bible College near Knoxville, Tennessee, I had a roommate named Bill Green. Bill and I had a good relationship and tried our best to motivate each other to do the work we were supposed to do for our classes. I hate to admit it but I resisted a lot of Bill's good urgings and sloughed off a lot of my classwork due to some poor choices I was making with my life. I was just killing time.

During the second semester Bill found a neat little placard and put it on the front part in the middle of the bottom shelf at our desks. The placard read, "If you're going to kill time, work it to death." Sadly, it was a bit too late for me as I was already on my way out of JBC. But the sentiment has stuck with me. However, I recently learned another saying from noted author/philosopher Henry David Thoreau. "You cannot kill time without injuring eternity," Thoreau wrote.

How can killing a little time injure eternity? Ever have an opportunity to do something good and fail to do it? Why did you fail to do the good you knew to do? You killed time. We've all done it. The situation is there for us to do something positive to affect the life of another person in a positive, perhaps even spiritual way and we found something else to do so we wouldn't have to do the good deed.

Jesus' half brother, James, wrote one of the most pointed arguments against such time killing. "Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin." James 4:17 Kind of cuts to the chase, doesn't it? No beating around the proverbial bush, just plain talk. The Christian who fails to do what God lays before him is committing a sin. It has been referred to as the sin of omission. We have omitted an act for which God has opened a door.

Paul had a suggestion which makes killing time obsolete. "See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil." Ephesians 5:15, 16 That phrase, "redeeming the time," literally means to buy up the opportunities. Paul is urging us to invest our lives in the lives of others for their greater benefit. I guess you would say that's the way you play the spiritual stock market. We can kill eternity for us by not investing in the time we have here to serve the Lord. Killing time does injure eternity.

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