Saturday, January 27, 2018

480 Minutes

by Sylvia Gaston

Four hundred eighty minutes. That’s it! That’s all we have to operate with each day.

In any given 24-hour day, we are given 1440 minutes. Sleeping takes up about 480 minutes and work takes up about 480 minutes. That leaves us with a measly 480 minutes a day to live within!! Are you kidding me?

At the beginning of each year, I typically reflect on how I have spent the past year and how I plan to spend the next one. It’s a great time to think about whether or not I’m happy about the way I spent my time.  If I’m not, it’s a time to make some changes.

My friend, Gracie, recently posted this…
“So I've been thinking a lot about time. We're given only so much of it and it passes so quickly...Frankly, I'm wasting it. I spend so much time doing meaningless things. I need to step away from things that distract my attention and really, really focus on what I have and appreciate…God, my husband, my children, relationships - and just pour into them. With that being said, I've decided it’s time (lol) that social media and I break up -  maybe temporarily, maybe permanently. Not sure yet. This girl is about to go make some time count in her life.”

My best resource for wisdom in my life is God’s Word. The Bible has a lot to say about time.

Ephesians 5:15-17 says, “So, then, be careful how you live. Do not be unwise but wise, making the best use of your time because the times are evil. Therefore, do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.”

Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

Psalm 37:5 tells us, “Commit your way to the LORD; trust in Him, and He will act.”

Ecclesiastes 3:1-2 says, “There is a season for everything, and a time for every event under heaven:  a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot what was planted.”

So here I sit with 480 minutes at my disposal each day. Some of that time is used up for necessary (yet evil) things like laundry, groceries, cooking, cleaning and driving. And, if I’m being honest, some of my minutes are squandered away on television and the Internet.

In what ways are you squandering your time? Are you held hostage by social media or television or something else?

Here are some shifts in my life that I am implementing to make the best use of my 480 minutes:
  • Less TV, more gym time (3-4 days a week – this is a 2-fer because I also get   to spend time with my friend and workout partner, Lee)
  • Read non-fiction books in addition to the fiction that I love
  • Take an online course to keep my mind sharp and my knowledge expanding
  • If I add a new TV program to my DVR, I must remove one (I also do this with my closet – 1 new item in = 1 item must go)
  • Once a week, work on 1 home improvement item so that they don’t stack up
But, more importantly, I am looking at everything I do – every minute I spend – verrry carefully to see if it is worth doing. Is it a waste? Is it meaningful?

Before I do any of these things, however, I am FIRST going to ask God how He wants me to spend my time. He certainly knows what’s best for me…and for you.

What are you doing with your 480 minutes? How about adding a visit to the church of your choice in there somewhere? Or set aside some daily time to pray and hear from God about how He thinks you should be spending your time?

It’s 2018, neighbors!! Go make some time count in your life!

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