This week we’re excited to welcome back Mercy staff member, Jamillah. She reminds us of an important truth about our personal time and why it matters how we spend it. Thank you, Jamillah, for this encouraging word!
Give me a big bowl of popcorn and a great movie selection, and I will be content in front of my TV for hours! Home is my comfort zone. I find solace there. Home is where I am not subject to the needs or demands of anyone else. After serving in a people- and service-oriented role during the workday, I often look forward to retreating to this safe haven, whether that is to just “veg out”, do chores or take care of something on my long list of things to do. But when I get a phone call while en route with a request that requires me to be there for someone else before I’ve made it to my place of escape, I can, admittedly, get annoyed.
One of our culture’s most prized possessions is time. I, for one, don’t seem to ever have enough of it! As a result, I can be unwilling to relinquish any of it for something that does not fall on my to-do list or comes between me and my “me time.” I can get so consumed with my own life that I fail to see the needs of others.
In 1 Peter 4:7-10, Peter tells us, “The end of all things is near. Therefore, be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” Can you believe that in the same context as a verse that tells us the end is near is the directive to love each other and offer hospitality? And without grumbling at that!
As Christians, we have the spirit of Christ and carry it with us everywhere we go, enabling us to extend love and compassion to family, friends, coworkers, and anyone we come across in our everyday lives. If we get caught up in our own needs and get stuck in the cycle of work and recovery, we will miss the chance to extend the freedom we have found in Christ to others.
All good things are gifts from God. Once we understand this, we are free to give them up – including our time – for the good of others. An unplanned interruption could be an opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life. It could be exactly what they need to keep from giving up or making a wrong choice. “Plans fail for lack of counsel; but with many advisors, they succeed” (Proverbs 5:22 NIV). You could be the very vessel God wants to use to speak truth into someone’s life at the moment they need it – their wise counsel. Let’s make the daily choice to sacrifice our own comforts to give others the opportunity to experience freedom in Christ.