15 Pay careful attention, then, to how you walk —not as unwise people but as wise— 16 making the most of the time, because the days are evil. 17 So don’t be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18 And don’t get drunk with wine, which leads to reckless actions, but be filled by the Spirit: 19 speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making music from your heart to the Lord, 20 giving thanks always for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
Paul understood that to live effectively as Christians, we’d need to be mindful of how we spend our time. In Ephesians 5:15-20 he writes, “Pay careful attention, then, to how you walk—not as unwise people but as wise—making the most of the time, because the days are evil.”
Notice how Paul tells us to “make the most of the time.” The ESV translation reads, “making the best use of the time.”
In regards to our schedules there are times when we will have to choose between what’s good and what’s best. Many of the things that consume our time are good things, but not necessarily what’s best. Paul reminds us in verses 15-17 that we’re to walk in wisdom and to seek the Lord’s will regarding how to best use our time.
Undoubtedly, we live in a busy culture. Between work, raising children, school events, long commutes, housework, social engagements, and entertainment, most people have busy schedules. For many of us, this pace becomes a major source of stress.
If we aren’t careful, overcommitted schedules have the potential to distract us to the point that we’re ineffective for Kingdom purposes. For instance, if our days are so busy that there isn’t time for prayer, worship, and spending time in God’s Word, then that’s an indicator we’re overcommitted in our schedule.
Paul says in verse 15, “Pay careful attention to how you walk.” As we consider time as a spiritual discipline, we need to take an honest look at our schedules to see if we could make changes that would make us more effective.
Many times we will see obvious things that need to be cut from our schedule. Other times we may find things that are good, but they are things God hasn’t called us to do. In those cases we will need to prayerfully consider what needs to be eliminated to make room for what is best.
It has often been said that time is a gift, yet not a single one of us knows how much time we have. Time differs from money in the sense that once it is spent, we can never get it back. As Christians, we must remain mindful that how we spend our time has the potential to impact God’s Kingdom for eternity. Let’s not squander a single minute.
- Are there areas in your schedule where you need to choose between what is good and what is best?
- Have you committed to things that God hasn’t called you to?
- What changes do you need to make in your schedule to make better use of your time?