Did you know there is something more precious than diamonds, rubies, and gold? Yes, time is one of the most precious commodities we have. It is the one thing we will never get back once it is gone; Time is the one thing people who are dying wish they had back. Time is the one thing parents wish they had more of with their children and spouses often wish they had more of when they get to the end of their life. No matter who you are, where you come from, what your religion is, or what your race is – time is universally something we will use (or waste) and when it’s done – it’s done.
I am thankful for time but I must admit there are days I do not feel like I have enough of it. My son, Malachi, will be 18 this year and to be honest with you I don’t know where all the time went. There were only a few days that I did not spend with him but it seems like overnight he went from this little guy who’s feet I used to hold in my hands and now he is now taller than me with more hair than me; someone with his own opinion about life and I think “woah, what happened?” I was present for nearly every milestone and it does not feel like 17 years have come and gone but they have and he is staring manhood in the face as I cover grey hairs.
Time is a beautiful thing, and it is something you can never get back. As I mentioned earlier, time is one of the most precious commodities we will ever have. Unlike money, gold, and jewelry, time is something we can never get back. Knowing this makes me keenly aware of how I spend my time. When I was younger (early 20s), I did what I wanted and wasted a lot of my time doing things I had no business doing but as I got older and had my son, I began to see how very precious time was. Now that I am 40, I understand better the phrase, “don’t waste my time,” because now at 40 I have the understanding that time is something I would rather not waste on foolishness.
Our time is so precious, whether we realize it or not, and one day we will get to the end of all of our days, I want us to be able to look back at our life and enjoy the time we had and the time we used wisely. Today and every day I am thankful for time. I want you to remember that while time is precious so are the moments. One thing I have to work on is balancing my need to work with my family time. I am a hard worker, mostly because I am always thinking about a book or a project and because I have multiple businesses operating at once, but I have to remember to stop and enjoy the time I have with my family because every moment with them is precious.
Malachi and I are avid Marvel movie fans but that was not something I did, it was something he wanted to do, but years later we still talk about the trailers and the previews and the movies. We watch them over and over again until we know all the scenes then we eagerly await the next Marvel wonder. It’s our process and while some may think that it’s foolishness, for me it is the best time ever! We laugh until we are crying at the silliest things while we wait in line and as his wall comes down, we talk and he listens and if you have a teenager you know that is time well spent. I know that when he is older with his own family, I will look back on our Marvel movie days with joy because it was time well spent. When he is older, and I have gone on to be with the Lord, Malachi will still be able to think back at those times and laugh at our silliness. That is time well spent.
So today I just want to encourage you as I encourage myself to spend your time wisely, use balance and remember you only have so much time so make the best of it, I know I will.
Have you ever been in a situation where you stop and think to yourself, “If God had not changed me, I would be doing ____ right now?” I had this thought after a recent interaction that previously would have driven me to say some not so nice words.
God really has brought me a mighty long way. I was recently wrongly criticized for something that took major effort on my part. I was extremely annoyed by the comments given to me because not only was my effort not acknowledged, but also the other party’s criticism was misplaced because the other party felt they could do a better job. After receiving the criticism, I was hurt and very angry, but as I sat in my chair ready to throw in the towel and give up, God spoke to me. He told me to come to Him and while my first thought was to pick up the phone so that I could complain and vent to my friend, God said, “Come to me,” so I did. When I sat in my quiet place and talked to Him, I began to exchange my frustration for His wisdom and by the time I left His presence, I was feeling better than ever.
So, how is that different? Before, I would have stayed angry and been angry for a long time. I would have stomped around the house talking to anyone who would listen about my frustrations, about how unfair this person was being toward me, and about how angry I was toward the offender. I would have never prayed about it to get God’s voice on the matter, I would have walked around without forgiving, and I would have surely ignored that person completely until I felt they had suffered enough. But that is not how God wants any of us to live; The Word says in Luke 6:6 in God’s Word Translation, “Stop judging, and you will never be judged. Stop condemning, and you will never be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” It all applies, but the last part is what is key for me, “forgive, and you will be forgiven.” God wants forgiveness, not judgement or condemnation from us. It can be so hard to forgive, especially when you feel like you are right in your anger, but that is exactly what God wants from us.
God wants forgiveness from us because we can’t really love people completely holding onto anger. We cannot fully embrace others when there is hardness, bitterness and unforgiveness in our hearts. Our mouths may say that we have forgiven, but God knows our hearts and our hearts reveal the truth of who we are and how we feel. God wants forgiveness from us because that is His word! Forgiveness is not easy, but it is absolutely a must for us yet, at times, it can be the hardest thing we ever do. In this case, forgiveness for me, meant that I choose God’s way – coming to Him to release the frustrations and anger I felt. It meant leaving my feelings with Him and receiving His instruction, direction and ultimately His peace. The old Liela would not have done that at all; the old Liela would have bypassed God altogether and I would have been stuck in anger for days or weeks. Thankfully, I am no longer who I used to be; thankfully, God has changed me because I can forgive and move on from those negative and toxic emotions. It took a lot for me to get here and even more for me to actually realize that I had changed, but I thank God that His way is better than mine every day of the week.
My friend, ultimately we are all a WIP (Work In Progress) and none of us are perfect at all. God is continually working on us to make us who He needs us to be. It will not always be an easy journey, but know that just like you, I go through things too, and just like you, sometimes I miss the mark and other times I land right on it. The goal is not perfection – the goal is being less of who we were and more of what God wants us to be. If any of this rings true for you, comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Liela Marie Fuller
Author, Mother, Friend, Believer in Jesus...Really Just Me.
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