Time management a great challenge

Published 4:28 pm Saturday, June 4, 2016

By Larry Stover
Stover lives in Valley Grande and is pastor at Praise Park Ministries Church of the Nazarene.

Life is always busy.  It seems the older I get, the faster it goes. With everything pressuring me for my time, it’s easy sometimes to forget about the things that are really important. Time management becomes one of the great challenges of life.

One of my chief concerns for people everywhere is that they have become too busy for God.  If we are not careful, we get the same admonition that the people from the church at Ephesus received in the Book of Revelation, “I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place (2:4-5).” God is very loving and merciful abounding in grace, but he is also a God of justice and judgment.

The Book of Judges, chapter 2, in the Old Testament gives the cycle of people who have served God and then fell away from a relationship with him.  It begins in verse seven, “The people served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders who outlived him and who had seen all the great things the Lord had done for Israel.” For over 100 years Israel served God and all was well.

Just like people today, the Israelites got too busy for God and began to drift away. Verses 10-11 explain, “Another generation grew up who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel. Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”  I am amazed how one person can change generations to come by making a decision whether or not to serve the Lord.  It becomes a sad commentary when they choose to walk away from God.

It becomes a tragedy when the justice and judgment of God come to a people or a family.  It happened to Israel and it can happen to us as well.  Verses 14-15 give the details; “In his anger against Israel the Lord gave them into the hands of raiders who plundered them.

He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, whom they were no longer able to resist. Whenever Israel went out to fight, the hand of the LORD was against them to defeat them, just as he had sworn to them. They were in great distress.” When we choose to disobey God, there are consequences. I tell people continually, “You are free to make any choice you want, but, you cannot choose the consequences of your choices.”

Americans have come to ignore God in a plethora of ways with no regard to the consequences. Our nation is reeling in the consequences or irresponsible “freedom.” The home continues to suffer the consequences of improper behavior.  Has anyone stopped to examine the situation and wondered if the problem is that we have become too busy for God and have wandered off on a tangent of self-glorification?

Jesus Christ died on the cross to reconcile us back to God. He is waiting again for the cries of the people. Judges 2:15 is summed up, “They were in great distress. Then the Lord raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders.” The Lord is waiting for us to come to the realization that we desperately need him to make it in this world. Is it time for you to return to the God of your forefathers?

Juggling the important things of life is an ongoing challenge. When I keep my priorities in perspective, it makes life “Simply Beautiful.”