One of the key Bible verses guiding the use of our time could be Ephesians 5:15-16.
Be very careful, then, how you live — not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
These verses not only instruct us to make the best use of our time but also cue us in on what is required to do that:
- discernment (“be very careful, then”)
- wisdom (“not as unwise but as wise”)
- perspective (“because the days are evil”)
This post will look at the first requirement, with subsequent posts presenting the other requirements for making the most of every opportunity. You can subscribe to this blog to receive e-mail notice of new posts.
To Make the Most of Every Opportunity Requires Discernment
“Be very careful” comes from two Greek words: blepo (to see) and akribos (accurately, exactly) If we are going to make the most of every opportunity we must observe what is going on around us and properly interpret it. Use discernment! The King James Version words it, “See then that ye walk circumspectly.”
How are we going to be discerning? — by looking at life through the grid of God’s Word.
In speaking of the Word, Hebrews 5:14 clearly states that it is those “who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” The more time we spend with God in His Word, seeking to learn how it applies to life, the more discerning we will be.
We can’t just coast through life and not think about what we are doing if we want to do what is best. We must take what we know from God’s Word and start by asking ourselves questions like:
Is what I want to do God-honoring?
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. (1 Cor. 10:31)
Does it line up with God’s character and ways?
Be perfect (complete), therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matt. 5:48)
But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” (1 Pet. 1:15-16)
Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love … (Eph. 5:1-2)
Would Jesus do it if He was here?
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Col. 3:17)
When we take the time to stop and ask ourselves these questions about how we plan to use our time, and bring what we do into alignment with a positive response to these questions, we are exercising the discernment needed to make the most of every opportunity.