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The Time On God’s Clock

Seneca said, "We are always complaining that our days are few, and acting as though there would be no end." The Bible testifies there will be an end to our days on Earth. "The days of our lives are seventy years; And if by reason of strength they are eighty years, Yet their boast is only labor and sorrow; For it is soon cut off, and we fly away" (Psalm 90:10). No matter how much health food we eat, no matter how much cholesterol we eliminate from our diet, no matter how much stress we avoid, no matter how much exercise we get, no matter how long we sleep every night - whether we live a few years or many, life on earth is "soon cut off, and we fly away." What is seventy years, or even a hundred, compared to God who is "from everlasting to everlasting.. . .the High and Lofty One Who inhabits eternity.. . .the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the Lord, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty" (Psalm 90:2; Isaiah 57:15; 1 Revelation 1:8)?

The real problem is not that our days are few, or even that we complain that they are few. The real problem, as Seneca said, is when we act as though there will be no end to our days. The most critical issue concerning time is that our days on Earth are literally numbered. In the immortal words of Hebrews 9:27, "it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment." This inescapable truth is what makes our use of time so urgent. The night before He died on the cross, Jesus was able to say, "I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do" (John 17:4). To t Jesus, the realization that His time on earth was limited was not morbid but motivational. He said earlier in John 9:4, "I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work." Does the fact that life on earth is limited paralyze you or push you? The 525,600 minutes of the year 2007 stretch out before us and hold promise that we, like Jesus, can be about our Father's business (Luke 2:49). You still have time to be baptized into Christ or to renew a broken connection with the church. You still have time to say thank you or send words of cheer to some discouraged soul. You still have time to make an apology you've been putting off or say "I love you" to your husband or wife. You still have time to read the Bible, visit a shut-in, make a phone call to a friend, or step across the street and invite a neighbor to church. When would be the best time to do God's will and carry out God's work? To that question, God's clock answers, "Behold, now is the accepted time: behold, now is the day of salvation" (2 Corinthians 6:2). The time on God's clock is always "NOW!"

Dan Gulley
Smithville church of Christ