So, I wanted to take a moment this morning and ask you a very important question:
WHAT WOULD YOU DO WITH IT IF YOUR WERE GIVEN THE GIFT OF TIME?¿
Over the past several weeks, God has been whispering to my heart about the “gift of TIME” – about how precious it is and about the importance of how one “spends” it. Like any other gift, TIME has value but it does not last forever. Each day it erodes away until none of it is left. All one has when it is gone is the residue of what was done with it.
For several weeks now people have been discussing over and over again the upcoming presidential election and how important it is for the future of our country. Some have said that if one candidate is selected over another, God is going to bring sure judgment upon America because of the depravity of his beliefs and policies. Others have even gone so far as to say that if that particular candidate is chosen, not only will judgment come, but the “end” of the age could come as well. These thoughts have provoked many to begin fasting and praying for the future of our nation.
While I see the importance of the fasting and prayer – as a matter of fact, my family and I are engaged in it as well, my question is, “WHY are you fasting and WHAT are you praying for?” If you are participating in the national prayer and fasting campaign, what is your motivation for doing so? Are you doing so just to avoid judgment? Are you doing so just so your favorite candidate will win? Are you doing so just because you do not want to face hard times in the future? Are you do so for four more years of ‘normalcy’ (whatever that is). Are you doing so in order that the economy will spring back and make us prosperous once again? What? Why? What is your reasoning for the prayer and fasting you are doing?
Friends, our motivation for prayer and fasting should be to see a ‘heart change’ in the American people and to see the genuine repentance of a nation who has done debaucherous things in the eyes of a holy God. Unless there is a heart change in the people, things will stay the same. No! Things will worsen.
God promises to hear the cry of His people when it is accompanied by genuine repentance. II Chronicles 7:14 says, “If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” What if God hears our cry and relents in His anger, granting us a little more time of peace and prosperity?!? What will YOU do with it?
Sadly, many people are praying and fasting, asking God for a reprieve, for purely selfish reasons. They want their business to grow, they want to purchase the new house they have always dreamed of, they want their investments to pay big dividends, they want to enjoy a little more of their retirement; it seems to me that when I hear people talking about their reasons for a few more good years, the reasons are all self-focused reasons.
God began to deal with me personally about why I am asking Him for a reprieve – for a change in the heart of the people that will guarantee us at least four more good years. It was a very sobering moment when I realized that some of my motivation was purely selfish. Because I do not want to face God’s wrath and His indignation towards a sinful generation, I was praying for His anger to relent. BUT, what I should have been praying was that His anger would relent IN ORDER to give me more time to reach the people groups who have aroused His anger the most. Sinners full of wicked thoughts who exhibit wicked deeds NEED to hear about the love of God and NEED to know there is hope for change inside of them. If my request is answered and God relents in His anger just a little while longer, THAT needs to be what I spend His precious gift of TIME doing – reaching the lost who are hopeless in their sin.
Friends, how will you spend your time? If God grants the request of His church and relents in His anger, forgiving the sin of tolerance and complacency that we are guilty of, what will YOU do with it? Spend it selfISHly or selfLESSly? The Bible says we must be about the work of redeeming the time, “Making the best use of time because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:16). We are not justified in our wasting of time. We have been put here for a purpose – to win the lost.
Four more good years will only be granted for one reason: TO REDEEM THE TIME!
What will you do with the precious “gift of time” IF it is granted us?