Time For A Bucket

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Today, I’ve got a bucket. Want to borrow it? To do what? Glad you asked!

In our weekend seminar, Dr. Brad Harrub described Christians as a boat floating on the water. We are “in” the world, but not “of” the world. (John 17:14-16). In other words, we are surrounded by worldliness, and as long as we keep it out of our boat, our boat will float and continue to function as a boat. But if we let too much water in, we are no longer able to glide across the water but are weighed down to the point we can no longer do what boats are supposed to do and we risk sinking totally into the water, never to function as a boat again.

So today here’s what I’m doing. I’m bailing water. I’m starting with Facebook, something I never thought I’d even be interested in any way, yet today it takes way too much of my time. I’m getting rid of all the stuff that makes me spend an hour a day looking at it instead of 10 minutes. I’m reclaiming about 7% of my waking hours and determining to spend them more efficiently.

Next, politics. I don’t want my head buried in the sand, so I’ll stay informed, but I’m going to stop listening to politicians that raise my blood pressure and spend more time praying for them.

TV. More water seeps into my boat through television than any other means, even the internet. I don’t go looking for sinful websites, yet I’m guilty of watching some show or movie that flashes questionable or even sinful material in a brief scene, or I’ll sit and listen while they curse and take the Lord’s name in vain. That doesn’t make me act or talk like them, but it slowly desensitizes me. My time can be better spent growing my faith, not staring over the cliff into the world that I’ve chosen to forsake.

Internet too. There are certainly millions of things to see on the internet that God has no objection to. But I’m simply reducing my time, and doing more face to face time with my wife. We are together, but if one or both of us are glued to the iPad, bedtime comes around before we exchange much more than a ‘hello’. I’m improving that situation.

I’ve got a lot of other things too, I’m far from perfect. I look up sometimes and I’m in the middle of gossip I didn’t go looking for but found anyway. I get caught up wasting time discussing politics that I’m basically powerless to change, aside from my one vote. I also don’t manage my free time as well as I can, looking to the needs of others. Too much entertainment, not enough accomplishment.

Prayer time and bible study don’t need to be bailed out of my boat, but with less worldliness to consume my time, I’ll have more room for both.

Well, those are some of mine. I’m lightening my boat and throwing out a bunch of the world’s stuff that I don’t need. What about you?

Maybe you still have kids at home, what can you do to improve your time with them? How are they spending their time and what can you do to help them use it wisely? Maybe your issues don’t involve time, maybe you are still pursuing that career to the detriment of your soul. Maybe sports is your first love, maybe your hobbies. If so, God calls that idolatry. Maybe you still covet, like wanting that big house regardless of what it costs you. It’s easy to get our boats overloaded, yet bailing even a little water at a time makes it possible to rise above Satan’s cesspool. Lighten the drag, and get moving again.

You know, on judgment day, it’s not going to matter if we have a shelf full of sports trophies or plaques of commendation. It’s not going to matter if we have a wall full of diplomas or mounts from trophy hunting or fishing. It’s not going to matter if our 401k is seven figures or if we have that vacation home. It’s not going to matter how many letters or titles follow our name. And we must understand it’s not going to matter if we warmed the same pew in the church building every Sunday morning if that’s all we did for God. What’s going to matter is whether or not our boat floats, and our lives belong to God instead of the world.

I’m a sinful human being, and I’ll never get the bottom of my boat completely dry by myself. It’s hard enough to keep water out of my boat during the storms of life, or when it’s raining on my life. The more water in my boat, the lower it sits on the lake, and the easier it is for more water to get in. I need to take care of my boat, and not wreck it so that water can’t leak in unnoticed. And I alone, am in control of the bucket when the water starts to accumulate. So today, I’m bailing water that has collected in my boat. Want to borrow my bucket when I’m finished?