One of our greatest gifts is time. Each of us have the same amount in our minutes, hours, and days. We buy all kinds of time-saving devices to help us save as many minutes as we possibly can, because we value our gift of time…Or do we?
Just as with every gift God gives, He holds us accountable with what we do with this valuable gift. Yet, I’m personally aware of how the enemy of our souls comes to rob and destroy our precious gift of time.
Ephesians 5:15-17 says,“See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” I believe to “redeem the time” means to make the most of every precious, fleeting moment. Each minute that slips through our hands will never be recaptured or redone. But how many times are we as keenly aware of our passing moments as we should be?
Some time ago, God gently convicted me of all the time I was wasting on social media. Particularly Facebook. I found myself spending more time reading comments and posts on Facebook than I was reading God’s book. And God spoke to me about it. How could I have a God-consciousness and hear His voice when I was busy listening to other voices?
Now before you think I’m trying to do the work of the Holy Spirit, be assured I’m only sharing how God convicted me. And the freedom I’m experiencing since I’ve obeyed His voice. I’m much more in tune with Him than I used to be. I have more joy and peace. And my family feels more love from me. It’s not that God’s speaking much more, but I’m listening more.
You see, I felt like I was distracted by social media. Most of the time, I wasn’t going on to Facebook to read my newsfeed. I was responding to a “tag” with a question about my cookbook or giving a word of encouragement to someone who was hurting. But I still lived in the awareness that I needed to stay connected. And because of this distraction, I was subtly beginning to be less connected to God and my family. Why should I reach out to others who are hurting, when I’m hurting my own family in the process?
It might not be the same for you, but when I’m distracted by too many things I’m less likely to hear the still, small voice of my Shepherd. I’m less likely to see the needs of those physically around me.
Let me share some of the Facebook statistics I’ve found. According to Hootsuite, Facebook says that it’s users “rack up 100 million hours of daily video watch time.” And according to Mediakix, the average person spends nearly 2 hours on social media daily. This is only including Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, and Snapchat.
Now how many of us Christians are actually reading God’s word? This is a quote from Christianity Today, “We’ve released new research as part of the Transformational Discipleship study that shows only 19% of churchgoers personally (not as part of a church worship service) read the Bible every day.”
Wow! Is it any wonder our families, churches and world is falling apart?
Let me ask you…What would you think if your spouse would spend more of their free time with another person than they do with you? Whenever your spouse has a few minutes, they are drawn to this person. Wouldn’t you feel hurt by these misplaced affections? I wonder how deeply we wound the heart of our Father when we view our relationships with others across social media as more important than our relationship with God.
How soon we forget that our infinite, Holy Savior desires to be in an intimate relationship with us broken, finite lumps of clay. Do we realize the great privilege this is? Do we live our days with this awareness and in this relationship?
Psalms 16:8 says, “I have set the Lord always before me; Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved.”
I’ve found that all the great posts and encouragement I can read on Facebook still doesn’t come close to God’s word. I don’t care how wonderful the blog or encouraging someone’s comment is, it should never replace your time with God the Father.
If we’d spend more time meditating on God’s word than we do scrolling down our news feeds—think about how much stronger our faith would be. If we’d be as intentional in staying connected with those who are physically right around us as we are with socially staying connected, think about how much stronger our families would be. If we’d spend as much time encouraging and exhorting our own church body as we do Christianity at large, how much closer would our churches be?
In our journey of walking with people who are hurting, we’ve seen a common reason many people walk away from God after they face pain or loss is because they never really knew who God is. My friend, how can we know the heart of God when we’re spending more time being entertained (providing amusement) than entertaining (give attention or consideration to) God? How can you trust in the goodness of God when you spend less time with Him than you do on Facebook?
“And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.” (Rom. 13:11)
Social media is known to be addicting, while God’s word is convicting. Our flesh is naturally drawn to what makes us feel good, while it shies from conviction and areas of growth needed in our lives.
Shouldn’t we be spending more time on our knees, doing spiritual battle than fighting theology battles on Facebook? Has any good actually come by engaging in a comment-section debate?
How can we expect God to heal our nation when we’re unwilling to let go of our idols? Until God’s Book becomes more important to us than any other book, social media site, or recreation, we are choosing to walk in defeat. A crippled army unprepared to face the darts of the Enemy.
May God help each of us to redeem our time because the Bridegroom is returning. Are we watching for His return or will we be found sleeping? Or perhaps in more relevant terms; Will we be found mindlessly scrolling?
~Cindy (For The Mullett Family)