John Ed Mathison headshot

John Ed Mathison

Every person on the face of the earth has the same amount of time. We don’t have the same amount of money, relationships, property, or investments – but we all have the same amount of time. That makes time valuable and precious and important to each individual.

Sometimes we like to tinker with time. Two years ago North Korea decided that they would change their clocks to create a new time zone – Pyongyang Time. North Korea broke away from a standard that was put in place by Japan more than a century ago. The date was chosen to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the nation’s liberation from Japan. So they have a 30 minute different time zone from all of their neighbors.

You can change the time zone, but you can’t change the time. NASA decided to change the time in December 2016. They announced that they would add a “leap second” to world official clocks at 11:59:59 on New Year’s Eve. This one second was an adjustment which was meant to keep atomic clocks in sync with the earth’s rotation.

I don’t think NASA’s actions or North Korea’s decisions have made any difference in our individual lives. We still function on 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour, 24 hours in a day, and 7 days in a week.

We talk a lot today about trying to “save time.” Do you remember the old Tarzan movies when Johnny Weissmuller used to play the part of Tarzan? One of those movies depicted some white hunters from Europe who bought and moved a projector into the jungle and showed Tarzan the scenes of civilization – an airplane, a great city and a locomotive. They said to Tarzan, “You’re no match for that train, Tarzan. It goes 100 mph.” Tarzan asked, “Why does it go 100 mph?” “Well, to save time.” Tarzan asked the important question, “Why? What do you do with the time you save?”

Will Rodgers said that we spend half our lives trying to find something to do with the time we’ve rushed through life trying to save.

Years ago Mark Twain watched our nation go from horse and buggy to the train system. People marveled at how fast you could go from New York to Chicago by train instead of horse and buggy. He raised the question of why it was so important. The answer from people came, “We can save time.” Mark Twain then asked the question, “What good does it do to get a man from New York to Chicago quicker if it’s the same man with the same nagging problems with the same lack of purpose in his life?” That’s a great observation.

Saving time is not nearly as important as using all of our time well. Ephesians 2:15 reads, “Be careful how you live, not as unwise people, but as wise making the most of time…” The most important question is what are we going to do with the time we have today? Psalm 90:12 reads, “Teach us to make the most of our time so that we may grow in wisdom.” Colossians 4:5 reads, “Live wisely – and make the most of your time.”

Every person has the same amount of time – it’s amazing how some people use it so productively and some just waste it. Each week God forwards us 7 new days of opportunities to do good and minister in a meaningful way to others. Every day he give us 24 fresh, unspoiled hours to love, forgive, and bless and to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. Each year He gives us 365 days to use in losing ourselves in His service and experiencing the abundant life!

What time is it?

Contributing Writer