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What Does The Bible Say About Time Management

What does the Bible say about time management and being good stewards of our time? A LOT, actually!

Time management is something we all struggle with. Whether you are a mom, juggling parenting duties with wife duties, or a single person juggling the demands of work and social life, we all should be striving to manage our time better so we can be sure to have time with God during the day.

Let's dive in and meditate on these Bible verses about time management to see how we can be better stewards of the time God has given us here on Earth!

two antique stopwatches laying in the sand on a beach

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What Does the Bible Say About Time Management

“I've wasted it!  I've wasted it!”  These are words that struck me while reading John Piper's book, Don't waste your life

He was describing a memory from his childhood when an elderly man became a Christian.  Along with the joy of conversion was the deep devastation of wasted time.  Why did he feel this way?

Maybe it was the reality that this man realized that he did not steward his time. 

Show me, Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure.
~ Psalm 39:4-5 NIV

In light of this scripture, the old man was most likely grieved over the lost time God had graciously given him.

Is Time Important to God

There are many Bible verses about time management, but what I really want to talk about is the continual call in the Bible to steward our time well. Time management is not an off-the-cuff topic in the Bible.  Biblical time management is a command and is laced throughout the Bible.

Eternity: What is Biblical Time

Randy Alcorn uses an illustration to make sense of eternity.  He says is to imagine eternity as a long line that just keeps going, and going, and going.  Then, imagine this life as a tiny little dot at the beginning of the line. 

That's it- just a tiny little blip on the long line of eternity.

But the thing is… God makes it clear in the Bible that how we spend our time in this life has an impact on eternity.

That right there should shift the way you and I think about time management as a Christian.

What Does the Bible Say About Utilizing Time

2 Corinthians 5:9-11 says,

So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.”

This makes it really clear that stewardship of time, and what we do while on this earth and in these bodies is of eternal importance.  This is just one verse that clearly answers the question, “what does the Bible say about time management?”  There are more that we will get to in just a little bit.

Looking back at the illustration of eternity with the line and the dot, this scripture makes it clear that we should not be living our lives for the dot, but for the line.

When we live for the dot, it's about making ourselves happy, content, and comfortable here on earth.  It's serving ourselves whenever possible.

But instead, if we live our lives “on the dot” in light of eternity, we will always first be striving to glorify God and serve him in all we do.

Time Management As a Christian

What is most important in your life?  What are your highest priorities?

Those are the things that should receive most of your attention, and they are the things that should receive your attention first. The uncomfortable truth is that if your actions and the way you manage your time don't line up with your stated priorities… then they really aren't your priorities at all. If you are continually procrastinating on things that you say are important, you might need to re-evaluate those priorities!

As a Christian, you have to understand that this isn't a practice run, it is the real deal.

How Do You Manage Your Time With God

  1. USE YOUR MORNINGS WISELY.  Remember, we want to give our priorities our first and greatest attention.  I can attest that on days I sleep in until the moment my kids wake me, are the days my priorities suffer.  If you discipline yourself to get up earlier than absolutely necessary, you will have time to devote to reading the Bible, praying, and addressing other priorities.
  2. ASSESS HOW GOD HAS GIFTED YOU.  You do not want to waste your time by ignoring what God has called you to, and gifted you at.  Take some time to consider what you're passionate about and what you're good at.  When you can find out where and how God wants to use you, it's a very effective time management strategy.
  3. PLANNING. Why is planning so important?  Because we don't just want life to happen to us.  When we live intentionally and plan around our priorities, we will find chaos recedes and productivity increases.  Look at the things in life that you absolutely must get done.  Plot those things into your schedule.  When you see it in black and white, it will become easier to follow a plan that respects priorities.
  4. ELIMINATE UNHEALTHY DISTRACTIONS.  There are certain distractions that can't be helped, and we need to be at peace with that.  Life is life, after all, and not everything will run smoothly all the time.  For successful time management, though, you need to identify unhealthy distractions and eliminate them.  A great example of this can be our smartphones.  Yes, they're useful and great for many things.  However, they can easily become a point of addiction, and an incredibly effective way to waste buckets full of time.  Look at your own life and assess what might need to be removed to make more space for purposeful living, and intentional living.
  5. LEARN TO SAY NO.  Sometimes, the best way to manage your time is to learn to say no.  This goes back to understanding how God has gifted you and understanding what he is calling you to.  Sometimes, we will be asked to do really good things… but they may not be the things you're supposed to be doing.  You need to assess carefully what you will add to your life.  Is it something that you will absolutely rock at, or is it something that you will do, but do without passion and without skill?  Save your time for what you know God is calling you to.

Bible Verses About Time Management

The best place to find out what the Bible says about time management is the Bible, of course! Here are just a few verses that discuss this important topic.

  1. “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” Ephesians 5:15-17
  2. “As we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” -2 Corinthians 4:18
  3. “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” -Proverbs 27:1
  4. “The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” -Proverbs 21:5
  5. “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” – Psalm 90:12
  6. So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord,  for we walk by faith, not by sight.  Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.  So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” – 2 Corinthians 5:6-10
  7. Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.” – Proverbs 6:6-8
  8. “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33
  9. “O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!  Behold, you have made my days a few handbreadths, and my lifetime is as nothing before you.  Surely all mankind stands as a mere breath!” – Psalm 39:4-5
  10. “We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.” – John 9:4
  11. “But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.  The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.  Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace.” – 2 Peter 3:8-14
  12. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. – Ecclesiastes 3:11

With all the distractions that bombard us daily, it's important to understand how God wants us to use our time. We can't do everything we want or need in a day and have peace of mind at night. However, when you live purposefully by following what Jesus taught about being good stewards of your time then you'll be more satisfied with life.

Biblical time management is such an important part of growing stronger in your faith and closer to God.

When you're living for Him rather than yourself, He will give you strength so that instead of feeling like there is never enough time to get anything done, He will help make up the difference.

Hopefully, these bible verses about time management will help you to be a better steward of your time. Time is a finite resource, and every day we make decisions about how to spend it. It's important that we strive to be good stewards of our time – specifically by making God the priority in everything we do so that he can use us for his glory.

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