“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”–Colossians 3:17
Last week I took my elderly neighbor out to lunch. We chewed the fat over breadsticks and Italian food, and covered topics from our children, to grandchildren, to cleaning, to garage sales, to home repairs. Her house is getting to be too much for her, and her daughter is encouraging her to think of moving. My neighbor acknowledges the troubles of keeping up a house and yard, yet the idea of moving is unsettling too. She said, “I don’t want to scare you, but if I move I won’t have you and your family around”, and she proceeded to tell me how much we meant to her. I was moved. She ticked off the names of the neighbors around us, name by name, and even though she lived by them, she didn’t really know them like she knew us. We have been cultivating a friendship for years by helping her with her lawn mowing, inviting her to holiday meals, taking her to dr. appointments when she didn’t have a ride, and listening to her talk when she needed a friend. I realized it wouldn’t be the same for our family if she moved either.
A couple years ago she needed rides to dr. appointments after surgery and rides to the grocery store to pick up food. I realized that out of all the people on this green Earth, she had no one else around her to do the things she needed except for me. I had one thing that no one else seemed to have: TIME.
Time is such an interesting commodity. We all have the same amount, but we spend it differently. We would all agree it is precious, but we often waste it. I know I do. I can easily waste time on silly things. But when I spend time on the things that matter–the people around me that God puts in my path— I feel more fulfilled and at peace. So many people (not just the elderly) are desperately hoping for your time. Maybe it’s a teenager, a co-worker, a spouse, a neighbor. Who do you know who needs time with you?
The next question is—are we willing to give our time away to someone else? We like to fill our time with doing things for ourselves, and there is nothing wrong with that. But if we aren’t willing to give our time away to others as well, I think we are missing a huge piece of life. I like the passage above from Colossians, because it reminds me that no matter what I am doing, I can be doing it for Christ. I can clean toilets and raise kids and walk my dog, and help with church stuff, and take old ladies to lunch. And I can do it all for Christ. Won’t you join me?
Prayer–“God, I pray to recognize all I can do with my time. I am prone to waste it and say I don’t have enough of it. Yet you give me enough. I ask you to open my heart to who may need some of my time and give me the courage to follow through. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”