"Time in itself is really not the problem, but people who use it are. People who excuse their failures by saying, 'I don’t have time,' really are admitting to mismanagement of time… How often we hear, 'I wish I knew how to manage my time better.' Rarely do we hear, 'I wish I new how to manage myself better,' but that’s really what it comes down to."
- Ted W. Engstrom
“Time, time, time, is on my side, yes it is."
- Rolling Stones
We're more than halfway past the beginning of the new year, when hope seemed to spring eternally. When we looked at the year ahead, and it felt like we could accomplish almost anything. But in the chaos of the tyranny of the urgent, even the best laid plans we made feel like distant memories. Like sets of endless waves crashing on the beach over time, the day to day issues we face in our lives and enterprises, can really begin to wear us down.
HAVE YOU ABANDONED THE RESOLUTIONS and goals that you set at the beginning of the year?
In January, for my daughter's 9th birthday, she wanted to have another family over to share breakfast. Her preferred menu was donuts, kolaches, orange juice, and chocolate milk. As I waited for my box of kolaches, I asked the proprietor about how his business was doing. He said that this was his sixth year and that he’s learned that January will always be a bad month for him and a good month for fitness centers. He said that business really starts picking back up in February and remains steady throughout the year.
I think we referred to that as a “substitute good” in my economic classes. When the demand for one thing goes down, the demand for another goes up. Kolaches and gym memberships are clearly replacement goods.
These past few days, we've been spending time with several business leaders and executives at our Next Generation Leader and Executive Board meetings. We took some much needed time to assess our current realities; to take an intentional, honest look at how we are doing in our professional, personal, and spiritual domains… returning to the the groundwork we laid at the beginning of the year for group accountability and visibility with the purpose of real growth and change. There is still so much we want to do. So much we want to get better at. Of course, as you might imagine, when we aspire to change, grow, or just get back to our original goals and plans, we struggle with the concept of "having enough time."
The currency of the Kingdom is abundance.
We have precisely the right amount of time to accomplish everything the Father intends. Jesus changed the course of humanity and practically accomplished miraculous things as He walked through His brief life here on earth, but He always had time to do everything the Father intended Him to do. The rhythm of His life was simple: go spend time with the Father, learn what He wanted Him to do, and go do it.
Tozer says this about time:
“How completely satisfying to turn from our limitations to a God who has none. Eternal years lie in his heart. For time does not pass, it remains, and those who are in Christ, share with Him all the riches of limitless time and endless years. God never hurries. There are no deadlines against which He must work. Only to know this is to quiet our spirits and relax our nerves. For those out of Christ, time is a devouring beast.”
Maybe the antidote for our busyness is not to be more efficient in order to get more done, but to get more still and more quiet, in order to understand more of what He would have us do.
- Take time to revisit the goals you set at the beginning of the year - how are you doing so far? Where did you throw in the towel, and how can you pick it back up?
- How do you feel about the rhythm and pace of your life?
- When is the last time you “went away” to be with the Father?