Wasted Time

Hi, there!  Welcome back as we wander along the threads of faith in everyday life.  Grab your beverage, and find a comfy spot to take a breather for a minute.

It seems like we live in a world that is crazy-fast paced, and there’s never enough time for it all.  I once read the statement, please don’t ask me who or where, that said this – “If I choose to spend my time in any given way, I’ve automatically chosen not to spend it in any other way.”  Think about that for a minute.  If I choose to spend my first 10  minutes in the morning with the snooze button, it means I’ve automatically chosen NOT to spend it playing with the dog.  Or fixing my hair.  Or some days, it may mean skipping breakfast because I spent that time getting ‘just 10 more minutes’.   Unfortunately, I happen to really like the snooze button.

Time is very important- how we spend it, how we don’t spend it.  We all have the same 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week, 365 days in a year. We all have to sleep, we all have to eat.  Most of us have jobs that take up a lot of our time.  And we have families to care for.  And laundry to do.  And homes and cars to maintain.  And friends to stay in touch with.  And pets to care for.  And if we have kids, we can be so busy running from one activity to the other that we miss other things in our life.  I talked about that here.  Whatever our schedule, most of us jealously guard ‘our time’.

One day after work, I was spending an hour at one of my favorite Adoration chapels, reading one of my favorite Bible stories.  It’s the story of the woman who washes Jesus’ feet with her tears, dries them off with her hair, and then pours very expensive perfume on them.  The disciples were aghast – at her boldness, being a woman; at the cost of the ‘wasted’ perfume.  Jesus wasn’t perturbed with her, but plainly told His disciples that her worship pleased Him – even going so far as to say she would be remembered throughout generations.   There are two accounts; one names Mary of Bethany.  They are in John 12:1-8, and Luke 7:36-38.  I’ll leave the technicalities of one woman or two, one anointing or two, to a scholar.  She was devoted.  That’s what matters.

As I pondered the story, I also remembered a teaching on it from years ago.  This particular teacher had taught that in the Biblical culture, women didn’t have the status they do today.  They didn’t own anything.  They may have had a small jar of anointing perfume to save for their burial.  About the only glory a woman had in those days was her hair.  In this wonderful act of worship, this woman literally laid all of her earthly glory at His feet.  She took the place of the lowest slave, wetting His feet with her tears of repentance and gratitude.  She then wiped the road dirt (and whatever else an animal may have left on the road) from His feet with her hair.  Finally, she poured out her most prized possession on Him, a possession that she would most likely never recover in any form.

Then I asked Jesus, “What is my most prized possession?  What could I do to lay my own highest glory at Your feet?  What would that look like?”  His answer surprised me:  “You’re doing it right now.  You’re giving Me your time.”  Something so simple.  Something we can all give.

When was the last time you ‘wasted’ an hour with Him?  (Sunday morning doesn’t count, lol.)  Or does the very idea of spending a whole hour with Him seem way out of reach?  So, maybe you can’t spend an entire hour.  How about 30 minutes?  Or even 10 minutes?  We can talk about what to do for an hour in another post.

It’s possible that time isn’t really your most prized possession.  Maybe it’s your money – where can you share it?  Maybe it’s your car – can you give someone a ride who cannot pay you back?  Maybe it’s your wardrobe.  Who needs the clothing you seldom wear?  Or maybe your most prized possession is the forgiveness you refuse to someone who has wronged you.

Is there a longing someplace way down deep inside your heart that wants to give Him more?  Are you afraid of how other ‘disciples’ might react, so you just keep shoving it further down?  Let me encourage you – ignore all of them, focus on Him, and give Him whatever is most precious to you.  He’s there, able to transform whatever we give Him into something infinitely more beautiful and precious.

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