How important is your time? Do you ever get frustrated when others waste your time?
In Matthew 15 we read a story involving the Pharisees. As usual, their conversation involves a litany of questions for Jesus, but all their questions are superficial. They seem to be so concerned about legalities rather than the real issue at hand. They weren’t trying to understand Jesus they were trying to trap and remove Him.
It is easy to look at the Pharisees and shake our heads at their ignorance. Here they are with the Son of God, the promised Messiah and they are only interested in pedestrian questions.
But I wonder if we do the same thing? Do we waste time with God on superficial things rather than getting to the heart of the matter?
Have we been avoiding the big issues with God? Has He been prompting us on something, or convicting us and we’ve been ignoring it?
Why do we do that? Is it because it is too hard to deal with? Is it fear that stops us from pursuing it? Or are we avoiding it because we disagree with God?
Sometimes we fill our lives with business to avoid having to face the deeper issues that may be painful. We seem to think that if we keep ourselves occupied we won’t have to deal with those painful vulnerable places.
Sometimes we choose to talk and talk to God without taking the time to be still and listen for fear of what He might say or that He may not speak to us at all?
And other times we just flat out don’t agree with God and think if we put it off long enough He will change His mind. Just look to Jonah to see how that technique worked out!
Today I am challenging us not to waste time with God.
Do you remember the Old Testament story of the Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years? Did you know that the journey should have only taken 6-7 days? Why did it take so long? Because the people refused to listen and obey God.
I don’t want to waste 40 days, let alone 40 years of my life! Instead, I want to be ready and available whenever God is speaking rather than squander the opportunities God is bringing my way.
Broken relationships are an area we can be very willing to avoid. There have been times when I have been convicted by God to apologize to someone when I haven’t wanted to. I have struggled and squirmed and put it off. But all that does is prolong the agony! And affected my relationship with God. I have found it much better to hear and obey even if it’s difficult in each moment. It is better to have momentary challenges rather than days, weeks or months wrestling with God!
Replacing avoidance with action gives us the opportunity to see God work in our life.
When God asks you to do something you can be assured of 3 things:
He is going to equip you for the task, Hebrews 13:21.
He does not ask you to do things that will harm you, Jeremiah 29:11.
He promised to be with you, Matthew 28:20b.
We get so angry and frustrated with people who waste our time. We are so blessed that our God is not like that. He is so patient with us and I am so thankful that He is that way.
The reality is that God doesn’t suffer from our time-wasting, we do!
I wonder what fruit we will see in our lives when we make a decision today not to waste any more of the time that we have with God.
Lord, I am choosing today to be a person who listens and obeys even if it is difficult. Please help me to be in tune with Your heart and willing to walk in Your ways. Amen