An article in this morning’s issue of the USA Today claims that, on average, Americans spend 17 hours a year looking for a parking spot, at an annual cost of $340 per person in wasted gas, time and increased emissions. In larger cities, that number went up substantially to a high of 107 hours a year in New York City. That is more than 2 hours a week just looking for a parking spot!
God tells us in Ephesians 5:15&16, “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” We are given a very finite amount of time on this earth, and we must redeem it well. Like money, talents, or gifts, time is a gift from God. A gift that we are called to redeem. Fools waste time, but the wise manage their time circumspectly (prudently, cautiously). Spending 107, or even 17, hours looking for a parking space is using time foolishly.
Often when we think about time management, we think of those big chunks of time, the big projects. But there is great value in redeeming the little times as well. It is those little times, like searching for a parking place or surfing the web, that eat so much into our daily calendars. They cause us to end our days feeling unproductive and unfulfilled. When we start looking for those little time wasters and redeem them circumspectly, we will start finding time for all those tasks that aren’t getting done.
I am not saying that our days should be all work all day. I am saying that we should be more deliberate and focused about where the time that God placed in our hands is going. Lately, I have been spending 15-30 minutes each day in the pool with my wife. And while that may not seem like a particularly productive redeeming use of time, it is. I get some exercise and sunshine, both vital for health. It gives me an opportunity to meditate on what I have been working on. It allows me to relax and refocus. And, most importantly, it keeps the relationship with my wife strong, something that is much more important than work.
Take some time today and look at where you are wasting time. Maybe you could redeem some time from your daily routine and use it to read a book or send out some thank you notes. Use your commute time to listen to some books on tape, a sermon (one of mine would be great, lol) or a motivational recording. When looking for a parking space, you could save some time and get some exercise by parking in a spot that’s a little further away from the door. There are so many ways that we can better redeem our time.
Well, Vee will be home soon for lunch, and then if the rain holds off we will hit the pool for a bit and redeem some time together!
Be Good – Pastor Jay
What ideas do you have to better redeem your time? Share them with us in the comments below.