“Pay careful attention, then, to how you live — not as unwise people but as wise — making the most of the time, because the days are evil.” ~ (Ephesians 5:15-16, CSB)
I’ve been meditating on this passage from Ephesians lately, and it got me thinking… As we approach the end of yet another year, I’ve been asking myself this question (assuming, of course, that God gives me tomorrow, and the next day, etc.):
If I were to live every day like today, what would my life look like in 5 years? In 10?
- What would my faith look like (active, stagnant, thriving, apathetic, etc.)?
- What would my personal ministry look like (to my family, my church, the lost, etc.)?
- What would my family look like? My relationships, my work, my health, etc.?
This verse from Ephesians tells us to “pay careful attention, then, to how we live.” It’s a call to examine our lives, to make sure that we’re not living as “unwise people but as wise.” And what does wisdom look like in this case? It’s “making the most of the time, because the days are evil.” In other words, it’s unwise to squander our time… Moses puts it this way, “So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12, NASB).
The problem for most of us is, we naturally gravitate toward complacency. Each new day that God has gifted us with becomes just like the day before it, and instead of growing (in areas like our faith, 2 Pet. 3:18), we stagnate… or even worse, we go backward. And if we’re honest, most of us haven’t given any real thought to where we want to be tomorrow, let alone what we want our lives to look like in 5 or 10 years.
Now, I’m not talking merely about “New Years Resolutions.” Frankly, I’ve never been a fan. Most of the time, we make “resolutions” and they never stick (just try and find a parking space at your local gym on January 2, and then come back a month later). As Christians, we have a higher calling. What we’re called to is an ongoing process of self-examination, repentance, and by the grace of God, change.
So my challenge for you today is this – make a list of the areas of your life, and for each one, ask yourself two questions:
- Where do I want to be in 5 years?
- If every day of my life going forward were a mirror-image of today, where will I be?
And if you don’t like the answer, what’s your plan for change?
Soli Deo Gloria!
(P.S., I don’t dislike all resolutions. If you want to see some good ones, look no further than Jonathan Edwards’ 70).