by Charles Box
Time passes so quickly. The year of 2007 has flown by and now we begin the year 2008. James described the brevity of time in chapter four verse fourteen. “Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” Job 7:6 says, “My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle…” Another description of how quickly time passes is, “…Our days are a shadow” (Job 8:9). Solomon spoke of the passing of time in these somber words, “One generation passes away, and another generation comes…” (Ecclesiastes 1:4).
Recognizing how quickly time passes, let us so order our lives as to make a difference for God in the year 2008:
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will use my time wisely. Paul said that we should be, “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16). Time should be redeemed as we sincerely repent of sins and busy ourselves with the work of the kingdom. Do all the good that you can today in the service of the Lord. Avoid wasting your time in Satan’s service. Eternal consequence will result from the use made of our time!
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will do all the good I can for others. Jesus went about doing good and so must we. Peter told how “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him” (Acts 10:38). Jesus’ life was simple. His business was simple. He went about doing good. His was the business of blessing others. Satan goes about seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). Christians must likewise go about seeking opportunities to do good. Jesus did good because he was good. Those who are good because they are Christ-like will also do good (Acts 11:22-26)!
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will be thankful and not complain. We are taught to “Do all things without complaining and disputing” (Philippians 2:14). Christians are not to complain, be discontent or to murmur. How can we shine as light if our spirit is that of a complainer (Philippians 2:15)? Christians are taught to, “be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.” Our attitude reflects which master we serve.
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will go the second mile. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus said, “And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two” (Matthew 5:41). Christians must serve, bear, forebear, and accept injury without seeking vengeance. Make the best of whatever life brings and be a Christian in every circumstance. Always live for Jesus under every circumstance of life.
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will be a soul winner. A soul winner for Jesus will tell others about God’s cure for sin. God gave his Son on the cross to redeem us. He suffered and died to save us from sin. “We see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone” (Hebrews 2:9).
I can make a difference for God in 2008 if I will be faithful to God. Faithfulness to God requires a strong resolve to put him first in our lives. Becoming a Christian is not enough. This is only the beginning of a life that is to be lived for God daily. The Lord must be first in the hearts and lives of his followers. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). The Macedonians had it right when “they first gave themselves to the Lord” (2 Corinthians 8:5). The Lord is satisfied only when he has “preeminence” in our hearts and lives. Paul wrote, “And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence” (Colossians 1:18). Christians must forsake all, and with a strong resolve, serve God faithfully. “So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14:33).
Time is so precious. Will you be wise enough to receive Christ as your Lord and Savior NOW? To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus (John 8:24), repent of sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Acts 8:37), and be baptized to be saved (1 Peter 3:21). After baptism use your time to spread the gospel of Christ and to help make our world a better place!
Charles Box, Walnut Street Church of Christ, P.O. Box 551, Greenville, Alabama 36037 USA
by Charles Box