Like many, I embrace the new year with hope for more joy than sorrow and success in accomplishing a list of goals. In the days leading up to a New Year’s Day, I typically reflect on the previous year, considering the good, the bad, and the ugly.
This past year’s end was no different until the morning of December 30th, when I looked at my digital clock that shows the day of the week, date (month and day), and temperatures inside and outside. One look at the date and I wondered if I’d awakened in the Twilight Zone.
According to my digital clock, it was Friday, the first day of the thirteenth month (13/1). The day, time, and temperatures were correct, but clearly the date wasn’t. There had been no power surge. Also, I’d changed the clock’s batteries a month before.
“What does this mean?” I asked. “Do I get an extra month to take care of the tasks I failed to accomplish before the year ends?” I wondered if time had frozen for everyone but me. I remember a Twilight Zone episode in which that happened with a character.
I cautiously approached a window facing the front of my house. Sliding the curtain aside just a bit, I peeked out. A car drove by. A neighbor was moving about in his front yard. Obviously, time was not frozen, so I decided to ponder the idea of time for a while. I found insight in the Word of God.
The Bible makes it clear that God’s view of time is different from ours. According to 2 Peter 3:8,
But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years,
and a thousand years as one day.
With this in mind, consider James 4:14:
For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and
then vanishes away.
Even if I were to live to be 100, my life would represent a small portion of God’s “day.” What then should my attitude be regarding time? A verse from the Old Testament tells us to seek guidance from God regarding our use of time.
So teach us to number our days,
That we may gain a heart of wisdom.
In the New Testament, verses from Ephesians are more specific.
See that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
Walking circumspectly means to walk carefully, considering probable consequences of our choices. This is practical, everyday advice that can be applied to words, actions, and even attitudes. Maybe I should say especially attitudes.
With a new resolve to honor God with the use of my time, I reset my digital clock to show the correct date (I wanted to stop feeling unnerved every time I looked at it) and planned my day.