It Goes By So Quickly

Blog 1.31.2022

It Goes by So Quickly

It was good to get away for a week. I am always intrigued by our perceptions of time passing. Leading up to our trip, Amanda and I were getting ready for our vacation, eager with anticipation for our time away. It would be our first vacation without our boys and our first significant vacation since 2020. We were dreaming of palm trees and warm beaches and the diminished responsibilities of work and parenthood for a few days. The months and days leading up to our excursion were filled with excitement as we planned out all the places we would eat and visit while on the island of Maui.

However, something interesting happened the moment our plane touched down. The realization that this trip would be temporary met us as we stepped off the plane. We were aware of this fact going into our trip, yet this notion became a reality that this trip was finite and fleeting. We only had seven days to do what we wanted, and time’s insistent marching became our adversary. You have two options when you realize this; you could sit and sulk in your hotel room, miserable that the time will soon be over—pouting that you didn’t have enough time to do everything you could imagine. Or, you can go and make the most of the time you have. The answer is obvious, you go and make the most of the time that you do have.

These realizations brought two passages, 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 and Ephesians 5:15-16.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18
 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

Ephesians 5:15-16 
“Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”

When it comes to our life on earth, we must make the ultimate recognition that the time is temporary. Some may experience this concept with dread or sorrow, and some may welcome an end to their days; whether we like it or not, we do not inhabit this existence forever. Everything we endure and experience on this earth is short-term within the grand scheme of things. While we are here, our lives may seem short or long, passing or perpetual, and either fleeting or forever; we may even fluctuate between these thoughts daily. However, according to God’s word, our time on earth is only momentary. Some individuals may never adjust to this reality. They may groan and complain that there isn’t enough time or that some have more time than they do. Some may even try to extend their time as if they have any control over that statistic. It is like those travelers stuck in their hotel room wishing for more time yet never capitalizing on their present situation.

For the Christian, we are aware of the passing of time, but we observe that there is also a future eternal glory. Because of the resurrection of Christ, we know that our death is not the end of our existence. We grasp that there is something that is beyond the lives we are experiencing. And so, whether our time on earth is short or long, enjoyable or sorrowful, positive or negative, we know that there is a life to come. Paul spends most of 2 Corinthians chapter 4 discussing the hardships and difficulties in our mortal bodies (vv. 8-9), but he maintains his confidence in the life to come. Like unhappy tourists, we can begrudge the fact that our time will be over soon, or we can make the most of every opportunity. These opportunities are bound up in the supporting verses of 2 Corinthians 4:6 and Ephesians 5:8-13; these verses communicate that we are lights, and we become aware that there is only a finite amount of time to shine into the darkness. In Ephesians 5:16, Paul acknowledges that the days are evil, literally that “the days” are our adversaries. We recognize that both time and the maliciousness of this world are stacked against us; this doesn’t change anything about our circumstances. However, it is why we should make the most of every opportunity.

Because our time is short, let us make the most of every opportunity to live like lights in the darkness.

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