meditations

What is most important to you? Spend time there

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I read an article recently which pointed out that most Christians spend one percent of their waking hours in church. This calculation was made with the assumption that Christians get an average of seven hours of sleep per night, go to church EVERY Sunday (or Saturday night for some), and the service lasts an average of seventy-five minutes each week. Based on those numbers, it is probably safe to say that most people in this area are in church far less than 1 percent of their waking hours.

A quick internet search will tell us that the average American spends roughly one third of our lifetime either sleeping or trying to get to sleep, one third of our lives at work and roughly twelve percent of our time on social media. My Flandreau High School math tells me that adds up to roughly seventy-nine percent of our lives on those three things alone! That does not leave much time for anything else, does it? Think about all of the things that we try to fit into the remaining twenty one percent…eating, homework, chores, spending time with family, etc. How about things like worrying, arguing, paying your bills and taxes, etc.?

While these unofficial numbers are fresh in your mind, think about this. The Bible is clear that we were all created by God in His own image and likeness (Genesis 1:26-27). The Bible is also clear that we were created for the purpose of worshipping and glorifying God. There are several passages in the Bible that teach this truth. I will give you three. In Isaiah 43:7, God references “everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.” Later in that same chapter, verse 43, it says, “the people whom I formed for myself that they might declare my praise.” In John 4:23 Jesus says, “But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.” I could keep going, but you get my point. The Bible is clear that we are created by God for HIS glory, to worship and glorify Him.

The Bible is also clear that we are meant to worship God together. It is true that a portion of our prayer and worship is meant to be done in private, but we were not meant to worship alone all the time. Hebrews 10:24-25 says, “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” In this day and age, it has gotten very easy to avoid going to church and worshipping together with our church family. There are so many other things that demand our time and attention. Many churches make their services, or at least the message, available online. But let’s be honest with each other. How many people who do not attend a worship service in person will take the time to view it online? And even if they do view it online, how many people will be able to devote their full attention to worshipping God when so many distractions are all around them?

I encourage you to take some time this week to think about the things that are most important to you. Be honest with yourself. Is God on the list? If you were to prioritize that list, would God be in the top five? When you are done with this little exercise, ask yourself how much of your time you spend on the things that are most important to you. If God is number one on your list of things that are most important to you, does the way you live your life reflect it? Some of us may need to make a few adjustments, and that is ok! The Bible tells us that ALL sin and fall short of the glory of God. The Bible also tells us that if we confess with our mouths that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised him from the dead, we will be saved! May this be the truth that is on our hearts and minds every day!

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