August 24, 2011

Priceless

by Leticia Seviraneta

What is time? Some people say that time is money. Yet still some people waste their time innocently. Some people think that their time is not enough to do what they want. Some people have no idea what to do with their abundance of time. Each of us has exactly the same 24 hours a day, seven days a week, up to 31 days a month, and 12 months a year. Yet with that same amount of time, one person can make a significant difference, while others not. So, here are the one-million dollar questions: What are we going to do with the time which has been entrusted to us? How would our time fulfill what really matters in this life?

Our definition of time reveals who we are, what we do, and the purpose of our lives. It also reflects our priority of life. When a person says that time is money, it shows simply that his priority is money. Each person may define time differently yet if you really want to know the best definition of time, ask those who are going to die soon. There is so much wisdom to be discovered as we know that our time on this earth will not last any longer. Suddenly what really matters in this life can be seen so much clearly. You will not find them asking to see their trophies of achievements for the last time. You will not find them wanting to watch television or play games all day. No, they will not. Most of them may ask to see their loved ones for the last time. At this phase, regret often emerges when they realize how little time they have invested in the relationship with them. It gives us a glimpse of wisdom that the time we have allocated in one activity the most in our lives may not be the most valuable ones in life.

One crucial principal of time is that the time keeps moving forward. It cannot go back to when you want it to be. Neither gold nor silver can redeem the time which has passed. That is why time cannot be bought by your wealth. Time has no price tag. Time is simply ... priceless.

Another wisdom about time which is vital for us to understand is that there are seasons in this life. King Solomon, the wisest person ever lived on this earth wrote, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1) As we have spring, summer, autumn, and winter; time also has its seasons. There is time to laugh, there is time to cry. There is sunshine, there is rain. It may be difficult to endure hardships in winter season, yet recognize that each season will end. No season lasts forever. When we face difficult moments, know that it will end. By then it gives us a ray of hope. When we enjoy joyful moments, know also that it lasts for a time. By then we can savor and treasure it more. Seasons may keep changing, yet God’s goodness remain the same. Our God is present in every seasons and He will strengthen us to endure everything. This is our everlasting hope and it is ... priceless.

Some people reach their dreams early, while some may take longer time. There is a flower that blooms within days, while others may take months. It took 7 years for Jacob to wait and 14 years to work in order to marry his first and only love, Rachel. It took 40 years for Israelites to reach the promised land. It took 30 years before Jesus began His public ministry. Throughout these examples, we can find that there will be a waiting season. Then, how would you endure this waiting season? Many of us do not like to wait. We think that it is passive and wasting time. Nevertheless, waiting itself does not mean as being unproductive. As long as we use it as opportunity, it will be a great season of preparation. The greatest wisdom of time is greatly executed throughout waiting. The great Russian philosopher, Leo Tolstoy, stated that the two most powerful warriors are patience and time. Patience will actively endure and keep going when the going is hard and slow. Good things take time but in the end patience will conquer all things. This is the hidden power of life and this too, is ... priceless.

Time can be either our enemy or our friend. We can choose to live one day to another in hectic pace or we can choose to savor each time peacefully when our priority has been ordered accordingly. Personal discipline will define which side our time will stand for. Most of us find we are too busy to do everything. Well, being productive does not equal as being busy. Eliminate your activities if it is really necessary and never put resting under the label of ‘wasting time’. Whether you believe it or not, here is the truth: Resting is productive. Even God rested on the seventh day. Did it make God unproductive? Remember, we tend to spend most of our time in activities that may not be the most valuable one in this life. Define what is truly meaningful for you and your loved ones. Is it getting more money? Is it spending quality time with them? If love is our priority in this life, remember that time will be the best gift for them. The key of peaceful life is when you are never too busy to rest and to spend time with God, loved ones, and even to serve strangers. For as we keep these priorities right, everything else will fall into its places effortlessly. Instead of being our enemy, time will be our best friend. This is the joy of life and it is ... priceless.

One of popular quotes says, “Yesterday is memory. Tomorrow is mystery. But today is a gift. That is why they also call it as present.” Many of us live too much either in the past or the future which rob us from the joy of the present time. We hold the regret of what we have done in the past and worry too much about the unknown future. Well, the simplest way to set yourself free from this bondage of time is by letting the past be the memories and letting the future be the mysteries. No matter how much time we spend to think about the past, we can do nothing to change it. Absolutely nothing. No matter how much we worry about the future, it will always be the mystery. No one knows, but God. Thereby, surrender all your anxiety, fears, and worries to a known God who is in control of everything. He is God in the past, present, and in the future He will still be God. Doesn’t it give you comfort to know that our future is safe in His loving hands? So, why should we worry? Instead of being present physically yet your minds wondering elsewhere, be determined to do the best now in everything. For great future is a collection of the best things you do at the present time. Your present time is a gift and it is ... priceless.

Have you ever had a dream by saying, “Someday I will ...”? It sounds like a statement of future plans, isn’t it? Yet most of things began with such statements will be merely fantasies if we do nothing toward that direction. Yes, there is time to wait. But there is also time to act. And today is the day that your ‘someday’ may become closer to be reality. Never make future promises without present actions. The dream is in the future, but the responsibility belongs to the present time. Most of people have a tendency to live as if they are going to live forever. The truth is, we will never know when our lives will end. Never delay happiness as if it belongs to tomorrow. Your happiness belongs to today and this too, is ... priceless.

If time is a gift, then it will have no use if it is not given away. Time will be the greatest investment when it goes to relationships that do not merely fulfill our longings but also bring legacy to the next generations. We are blessed to bless others. Our time may be terminated when we die, but the legacy we have made endures forever. How can we use our time to build others? What can we do with what we have now to share such a treasure? A fulfilled life will be the selfless ones. You will find that the greatest joy is hidden in the power of giving. Invest your time to build younger generation with the resources you have. If not us, who else? If not now, when? The legacy of Kingdom values will bring down heaven on this earth. Yes, heaven is here, now, and then. This is the treasure that will last forever and it is ... priceless.

The most precious things on this earth are usually the things that money cannot buy. They are invisible, yet meaningful. They are simple, yet influential. Embracing them is like choosing to walk in the narrow path which leads to life. Only a few treasures its worth; only a few embraces them as their best friend. They have no price tag since they are ... priceless. They are love and time. To reach a satisfying life is by having lots of love to be shared. To express love most effectively is by giving your time. So, what are you going to do with love and time?

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