A Few Seconds Can Change a Life: Use Your Time Wisely

A Few Seconds Can Change a Life: Use Your Time Wisely

As I look back, I realize more than ever how often a few seconds can change a life. I am still learning the art of using my time wisely by valuing the days, moments, and even seconds God has given to me. The results, or fruit, of these moments become the seeds that influence many other moments of our lives.

I have often told others, “I can not afford to have one negative thought toward anyone.” Why? Because the thought I harbor will influence my actions, my actions will form patterns of behavior, and those patterns will ultimately dictate the course of my life.

Does this sound too dramatic or overstated? Perhaps, but not likely!

God continues to challenge me with the reality of making the most of this moment of time — to reevaluate and refocus.

Procrastination

Procrastination robs us of any future reward for present effort. It deceives us into believing we have unlimited time to do the things we know we should do, and to think the way we know we should think. In the deception, we are hindered from moving forward.

“I know I should forgive, but …” “I should invest in that relationship, but …” “I shouldn’t think this way, but …”

We muse, buried in excuses and self-absorption — unmoved and unchanged. It’s a sad representation of far too many lives.

In a Few Seconds

In a few seconds, we have the power to change both our thoughts and actions.

  • “There’s nothing I can do about it,” can become “I can’t do everything, but I can do something.”
  • “Someone else will do a better job of that,” can become “I may not be the best, but I can make a difference.”
  • “It’s not my problem,” can become “Whether I’m the source of the problem or not, I am responsible to do my part.”
  • “I tried, but nothing changed,” can become “This relationship means too much to quit now. I will do everything I can to bring change.”

These changes of attitude demonstrate single moment re-thinks capable of transforming the lives of more people than we realize. A few seconds can change a life. Even mine!

The Seeds of Change

What is it today? What is God asking us to do right now? Les Parrott speaks of six impulses that keep us from improving:

  • Giving up before trying … because we feel helpless.
  • Shunning a challenge … because it seems daunting.
  • Settling for the statue quo … because we lack vision.
  • Shirking responsibility … because its easier to shift blame.
  • Doing the bare minimum … because that is all that’s expected.
  • Avoiding taking action … because we fear failure.

We don’t need to lose momentum, robbed of time and opportunity. By God’s grace, we can move beyond limitations into a lifestyle of wise time management. A few seconds can change a life!

May we be bold, asking the Holy Spirit to reveal any areas which are keeping us from living to our full potential. We have all faced similar challenges.

Truth to Hold on To

Instead of focusing on the problem, God offers us living truth:

  • We are not helpless!

 “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness…”
Romans 8:26

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Philippians 4:13

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Ephesians 2:10

For we are each responsible for our own conduct.
Galatians 6:5

  • I will do my best in every situation.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Colossians 3:23-24

  • God defines me, not failure!

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”
2 Timothy 1:7

A Few Seconds Can Change a Life

Let’s take a few seconds to consider these truths God declares about us — seconds that may change our lives. Hopefully, these seeds of change will produce the fruit of change in others.

“Lord Jesus, show me the paralysing lies that keep me from transformational change. May the truth You declare about me become stronger than the belief systems that have bound me. May I use the time You have given me wisely, bringing life, love, and hope to others. May I accomplish the full purpose and design You have declared for me. Today, Lord, I turn from wasted moments. I know that what You have ahead of me is greater than I can imagine. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.”

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Procrastination – Putting Off for Tomorrow What Should be Done Today!

Procrastination - Don't Delay

My father would often tell me, “MaryAnn! Don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today!” Maybe I heard these words often because I, like others, sometimes leaned toward procrastination.

He knew, what I also now realize, today is the only moment I have. Today’s opportunities will vanish in the evening’s sunset. My earthly father was echoing the voice of our Heavenly father. Though the former is no longer with us, the later continues to speak the wisdom of today’s fleeting nature.

Sunset - Procrastination

I have a lengthy “To Do” list. Many of the items listed are trivial. As a matter of fact, the most important “To Dos” don’t even appear on this random list.

Today – Working Diligently

When I was in the full-time workforce, whether my supervisor was present or absent, I cultivated an attitude of continually giving my best. It is a practise that has benefited me now that schedules are self-appointed, and goals are self-established.

Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones.
    Learn from their ways and become wise!
Though they have no prince
    or governor or ruler to make them work,
they labor hard all summer,
    gathering food for the winter.

Ant Proverbs 6:6

 But you, lazybones, how long will you sleep?
    When will you wake up?
 A little extra sleep, a little more slumber,
    a little folding of the hands to rest—
 then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit;
    scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.”
Proverbs 6: 6-11

Procrastination is much more pleasing to my ear than “lazybones!” Today is good day to work diligently at whatever God puts in front of me. The season may be fast approaching when I will not be able to do the things I now am capable of.

Ants can carry 20 to 100 times their own body weight. That is a lot of lifting! May my work ethic set a similar example to others.

Today – Keep Your Promise

“When you make a promise to God, don’t delay in following through,
for God takes no pleasure in fools.
Keep all the promises you make to him.”
Ecclesiastes 5:4

I know of some people who have “bartered” with God in a season of desperation. “Lord if you will _________, I will ___________.” When things are going smoothly again, promises fade into distant memory.

However, most people won’t fit into this category. What are some of the other promises that we make to God? One of mine is within the marriage covenant. “Before God and these witnesses, I MaryAnn promise to … from this day forward …”

Covenant Promise

There have been times in our marriage when I seriously wanted to escape that promise. More than once, I’ve pulled out our wedding vows and recommitted myself to the best of my ability fulfill my promise.  Sounds foolish maybe, but it gave me the strength and grit to see it through.

Today is a day to keep my promise to God and others. If I wait until I feel like, that day may never come. It is in the doing that the feeling lines up.

Today – Obey God’s Commands

“I will hurry, without delay, to obey your commands.” Psalms 119:60

Whatever knowledge I have of God’s command, I am responsible for walking in. Before I understood, God’s desire, I was not responsible to fulfill it.

As children grow their responsibility level increases. At first all their needs are met. As they learn to feed themselves, they do. When they become school age, applying themselves to learn is a reasonable expectation. As they reach adulthood, there are increased levels of responsibility and expectations to apply.

The same is true in the spiritual. God calls us to love one another, forgive each other, encourage each other, serve one another, honour one another, and be devoted to one another, to name a few.

One Another

“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today“,
so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”
Hebrews 3:13

In a community of support we spur each other on to follow God’s commands. Today is a good day to obey!

Today – Hear and Respond!

“God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.”
This he did when a long time later he spoke through David,
as in the passage already quoted:
“Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.”
Hebrews 4:7

The most critical “To Do” is responding to His invitation to enter a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. If you have never done this, “Today” is a perfect day! Every tomorrow after today will be impacted by this one choice.

Many people have already made the decision to become a Christian, by accepting Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord. Others delay, thinking there will be another day! The tragedy is, there may not be. After this life is eternity. Life does not end when your body dies. Your spirit lives forever.

No Procrastination - Heaven Awaits

What we do with this decision about Jesus will determine where and how we spend that eternity. Will that eternity be in the Presence of The One who is Life, or will it be in the place of doom designed for Satan and his emissaries?

Today is the day to hear and respond to God’s wonderful gift of salvation.

No Procrastination!

Today is an open door before us. Let’s step into it with vigor checking a few things of that “To Do” list. Let us focus on the things that matter the most, setting procrastination aside!

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Not done yet? Want to read more?

Normal? What Does It Mean To Be Normal Christian?

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