Time is an Investment!

| By Joanne Anderson | 

Devotional Scripture: “Therefore, be careful how you walk, not as unwise man but as wise man; redeeming the time because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16, NASB

In this particular scripture, the Apostle Paul is informing the people of God that the world is filled with evil that could distract us from the will of God if we are not careful and vigilant with how we utilize our time. He uses the word ‘redeeming.’ The word redeeming means to ‘buy back, save, or regain.’ Paul is informing us that we must use the time God has given us wisely, not foolishly, or we will find ourselves trying to regain or buy back the time wasted on the evil of this world.

As I reflected on this scripture, I thought about quotes about time:

“There is not enough time in the day”

“Just wasting or passing time away.”

Benjamin Franklin’s quote: “Time is Money”

No matter what phrase or quote we may use to describe time, our time is in God’s hands (Psalm 31:15a). He does not want us to be stressed out by the distractions of this world. He wants us to utilize our time productively for His Kingdom and glory.

If the scriptures tell us that our time is in God’s hands and that we must be wise because the days are evil, then our parent reflection question for this month is…

How much time are we investing in our parent-child relationships?

When I ask this question, I am not referring to how much time we spend organizing, watching and transporting our kids to different activities , or how much money we spend on these on activities, technology, latest fashion fad or how many trips we take overseas. I am referring to how much time we actually spend being fully engaged in our parent-child relationships. How often do we find ourselves just sitting, doing activities together, talking, listening, laughing and enjoying each other company?

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This question may be difficult for some and easy for others to answer. Regardless of your response, I propose this question because today’s world has many distractions that are having a negative impact on the family unit and relationships. We are constantly bombarded with media and technology that are easily influencing our children and parental values and decisions.

Today, we want our children to be exposed to the latest technology, and we get them involved in several different co-curricular activities because we want to raise a well-rounded child who will be able to compete locally and globally. Based on my parenting journey, I can relate to this train of thought.

Unfortunately, some families have allowed the distraction of this world to invade their family unit, thus having a negative impact on their family relationships. I can recall having a conversation with a parent, who shared they communicate primarily with their teen(s) using technology. Some days they are like passing ships. The parent could not recall the last time they spent time together as a family. Another parent shared how tired and stressed out they were because they had their children involved in several co-curricular activities, and by the end of the day they were all too tired to socialize with each other. Can anyone relate to this?

If managing and balancing your time with work, parenting responsibilities, and family relationships has created challenges within your family unit, it is never too late to change and reach out to children or family members. If your situation is such that it is impossible to reach out to them, do not live in regret or condemnation. Seek forgiveness and ask God to show you how to redeem the time you have lost. Ask Him how to develop and maintain healthy relationships with those children or family members who are still with you.

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Based on the societal changes that are influencing the family unit, how can we invest and guard the time God gives us to raise our children and maintain healthy family?

  • Teach and model the Word of God in your household.
  • Pray with and for your children
  • Value the time you spend with your children. Be totally engaged in the family activity or conversation (turn off technology).
  • When you start scheduling your child’s co-curricular activities ask yourself, “Why am I getting my child involved in this activity? Am I over-scheduling my child? Is my child interested?”
  • Create a healthy balance between work, parent responsibilities, schoolwork, co-curricular activities, family time, and ‘me time.’

Time is precious, and God wants us to use it wisely in every aspect of lives. He has given us talents and provides opportunities and activities that allow us to develop and reveal these gifts for His glory. However, He does not want us to get so engrossed in worldly activities that it distracts us from developing and maintaining healthy and wholesome family relationships (parent-child relationships).

Let’s face it, our children will grow up and leave the family nest, and hopefully start a family of their own. We will ask ourselves, where has the time gone? When we enter that season of parenting, we want to feel that we invested quality time raising our children, establishing positive and loving relationships, and creating meaningful memories and invaluable experiences that they will cherish as adults and parents.

Closing Scripture: “My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but deed and in truth.” 1 John 3:18, KJV

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Closing Prayer: My gracious Heavenly Father, thank you for Your Word for it is lamp unto my feet and directs my path. Please forgive me if I have not used Your time wisely. I pray for wisdom, that I may make decisions that show my children how much I value our relationships, their development, and time together. God, I pray that the time You grant us together will be pleasing to You, and the love that has been created will be passed on to future generations. Amen.

 

Mrs. Joanne Anderson is a child of God who walks by faith. One of her favorite bible verses that she believes and lives by is Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Joanne has been teaching twenty-five years at the Senior High level and believes this is a calling from God. One of her missions is to teach health and family studies concepts in such a manner that spiritual seeds are planted so that young people can make healthful lifestyle choices that will have a positive impact on their lives and their family.

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