Time. The most precious of all gifts. Priceless for once it is gone it can never be recovered. Ironically, we seem to never have enough and yet, have a talent for wasting it. Failing to grasp its complexity and importance, perhaps?
Henry Van Dyke describes this mysterious gift-
“Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.”
So, how well do you grasp and spend this gift?
Be careful because the answer will reveal more than you think… it will provide a glimpse into your relationships. Good/Bad? Solid/ Weak? Deep/Superficial? Fleeting/Lasting?
Absolutely no relationship can thrive if the investment of time is lacking or absent; and when I say “time” I’m talking about quality time NOT quantity. Quantity time simply put is time wasted. We’ve all done it- spent hours in the same room with others mindlessly watching TV, playing video games, stalking social media or surfing the internet. This is not quality time. It is NOT time that is invested well which will reap lasting benefits!
I still remember when I learned the difference between quality vs quantity time; I was a typical young teenager who made myself and my friends the center of my universe. Needless to say, when my step-mother proposed a "quality kid night out" to all the children in the family I wasn’t interested. I didn’t see the point of spending an evening with just my step-mom even if I got a free meal at a restaurant of my choosing. So, when my “turn” came around I was shocked to discover that the evening left me feeling very different- I felt special, loved and closer to my step-mother than ever before. Time that was spent one-on-one with no distractions, no competition with siblings and focus on just me - discovering what was going on in my teenaged world. Wow, who knew the impact!? Our relationship took on a new dimension because she demonstrated that I was worthy of her time.
There are overwhelming benefits to spending quality time with significant others:
*Self-esteem is built by instilling feelings of worth and significance.
*Strong bonds are formed; which in turn creates a trusted place to express hurts, frustrations, confusion, questions, dreams or desires.
*Intimacy is achieved- to know and be known by others. To attain the ability to accept another’s strengths and weaknesses and walk beside them in life knowing them so well that you are equipped to provide support, advice, wisdom and guidance that is befitting of that unique person.
*Love is shared.
*Marriages are made stronger.
*Family bonds are reinforced.
*Relationships are built on a solid foundations.
*Life is lived well.
But, it takes intentionality. It takes sacrifice. It takes prioritizing the important people in your life and not procrastinating- thinking you have “all the time in the world.”
It is not always easy. But, it is so worth it!
I love this quote by Leo Christopher:
“There’s only one thing more precious than our time and that’s who we spend it on.”
Deliberately investing in quality time with those that are important to you is something you will never regret.
You know what else? God wants to spend quality time with you too! You are His child- no matter how old or how far you think you’ve come in this life. Quality time spent with the Creator of the Universe never fails to deliver!
"The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth.” ~Psalm 145:18
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” ~James 4:8
Just like the lesson learned from my step-mother, my “quality kid time” with my Creator provides me with everything that I need. I hear how much I'm valued, I receive reinforcement, encouragement, and advice. I'm safe in His presence and our bond grows stronger the more we spend time together. I walk away filled knowing that I’m His unique, precious daughter and when I make time to draw near to Him, to spend time in His Word and presence- free from distractions to worship, pray and listen- HE MAKES TIME FOR ME! There simply is no greater investment!
I never want to hear God say, "You never spent any quality time with me. You weren’t in my presence long enough for us to grow close. How could I know you and you know me- if we never spent any time together? Oh dear, we’ve missed so much. Now it is the Day of Judgment, and it's too late. I don’t know you so depart from me.” (Paraphrased-Matthew 7:23)
Real relationships require “quality” time. Without it- time is just a fleeting gift that waits for no one.
Don’t waste a moment- invest your time wisely!
What is love if it is not shared and shared well?