“For, all men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands for ever. And this is the word that was preached to you.”
1 Peter 1:24-25 (NIV UK)
Have you got a minute?
You should have – the average life lasts about 45,000,000 minutes. It makes you think, doesn’t it?
From as early as I can remember, my parents would admonish me to not waste time. And that’s still good advice.
Our modern world has become very conscious of time. My watch here claims to be accurate to just plus or minus two seconds a year. It is governed by a tiny quartz crystal, vibrating thousands of times a second. Such technology has made possible time keepers of astounding accuracy. Sports records are now made and broken by fractions as small as one thousandth of a second and sports events are often scheduled around prime viewing time in places thousands of miles away from where the action is taking place.
We’re so time conscious today that airlines compete for the best “on time arrival” record, and we travellers get upset if it takes us six hours instead of five to get from one end of the country to the other.
I wonder what the people who lived back in Bible times would have made of this. They lived their lives by the rhythms of nature, not by pulsating crystals and airline schedules. Travel was slow and difficult and unpredictable. A traveller could often be delayed by weeks and even months.
But even back then, when life was less hectic, people were conscious of time and the need to use it wisely. They knew that each minute of life is a precious gift from God.
It’s true that our physical lives don’t last forever, but the Word of God, the good news that God has redeemed us in Jesus Christ, does last forever.
45 million minutes may seem like a lot of time. But it ebbs away, at the rate of 1440 minutes every day. How have you used the last 1440 minutes of your life? When you put it like that, it is sobering, isn’t it? No wonder the Epistle of James reminds us, concerning our physical existence: “You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes” (James 4:14).
Thankfully, the constantly passing minutes are not all there is to life. The good news is that God has created us for a life that cannot be measured by any unit of time. Our limited time now is only the gateway into the never-ending life God that has prepared for us.
Great God, thank you for the gift of time and help me to live every minute of it to your glory.
Study by Joseph Tkach