Redeem: Your Time by Travis Evans
May 22, 2008, 10:13 am
Filed under: Roles and Relationships


By: Travis Evans

What do you do when you have a few hours free to spend as you wish? When do you go to bed? When do you wake up? Do you ever ask, “Where did my day go?”?

Here are some numbers:

  • 1 hour of planning will save 10 hours of doing.
  • The average American watches 28 hours of television per week. That’s an average of 4 hours a day.
  • Tennessee ranks 12th for wasted time at work: 2.5 hrs. hrs/day = $19.3 billion year. Note: Missouri ranked 1st with 3.2 hrs. = $28.1 billion and South Carolina ranked last with 1.3 hrs. = $3.0 billion
  • Top Time-Wasting Activities at Work: Surfing Internet (personal use) 44.7%, Socializing 23.4%, Conducting personal business 6.8%, Spacing out 3.9%, Running errands 3.1%, Making personal phone calls 2.3%, Applying for other jobs 1.3%, Planning personal events 1.0%, Arriving late / Leaving early 1.0%, Other 12.5%
  • Top Time-Wasting Excuses: Don’t have enough work to do 33.2%, Underpaid for amount of work 23.4%, Co-workers distract me 14.7%, Not enough after-work time 12.0%, Other 16.7%

Try making a time sheet and keep track of how you spend your time. You will see that there is more time than you think. (This table can be copied and pasted into Word.)

  Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday

If I may quote my good friend Caleb: “We don’t want to kill time; we want to redeem it.”

So, do you kill time? Do you pass the time with idle speech and video games? Let’s be motivated by grace to redeem our time and use it to glorify the Lord.

How do you see yourself wasting time? What is one way that helps you fight this fight and not waste time?

Fighting the fight of faith with you, as the chief of time killers!


7 Comments so far
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Man, I’m flattered to be the one quoted here, but in good conscience, I cannot claim the quote. I actually heard it from Mike Plewniak, who I think was quoting someone else.

I’ll quote C.J. Mahaney here (ironically), “I don’t think that I have ever had an original idea”

Thanks for this post though Travis! It is a great reminder. And there is so much scripture about planning (esp. Proverbs 16). If we as men are committed to glorifying God in all things, we need to make a habit of planning our time wisely!

Comment by Caleb H.

Hey Travis,

I love this post. Thanks so much. I know it was for the guys but I think it’s applicable to all of us. I’m going to print out that time sheet. I will make lists (at times) at the beginning of the day to try to keep myself “on task” but I’m great at waisting time so a time sheet might be helpful. I’m not much of a tv watcher during the day but the Internet can be a big distraction for me from getting things done. So, I guess I ought to get off here now. 🙂 Thanks and great quote Caleb, Mike or CJ!

Comment by Trillia

May I say, some of those activities sound like a normal part of being a human being, not “wasting time.” They can only sound like wasting time if we are trying to convert humans into the machines in a factory. With the possible exception of excessive personal use of the internet, the company that doesn’t allow that sort of “time wasting” will soon be left with only the most useless employees – those who are unemployable elsewhere. The other employees, particularly the ones who find they are able to be productive even when socializing, spacing out, or even getting new ideas while using the internet for personal reasons, will leave for a work environment that is more pleasant.

Comment by Kyle

Hey Travis,

Yeah, that’s what can be so tricky about this issue. There are many legitimate activities that we can partake in that are not bad in and of themselves. However, in light of that fact that we are finite creatures, in subjection both to time and the authorities that God has put over us (Romans 13), we should be careful how we walk out our lives.

If we as men are seeking to please God who has saved us apart from our works, then we need to make the BEST use of the time, not just pass it away. (Ephesians 5:15-17)

So…the question isn’t how much personal-work or wasted time can I get away with here at work. (If you’re asking that question, be on the alert for sin)…Rather, it’s, “How can I please my Savior here at work from 9-5 today?”

Comment by Caleb H.

Sorry Guys, I meant for that last comment to be addressed to Kyle!

Comment by Caleb H.

Hmm, this is good. I find myself getting side tracked with the internet or looking off into the sky as I work. It has been something I have noticed last week. Very nice post, thanks for the reminders.

I would say that these small things are not bad, but when you add them up, it gets way outa hand very quickly. I agree with Caleb, the questions “Is this honoring God, or is this honoring my company, my boss?” are good to ask when finding yourself just messin around.

[1 Peter 4:10-11] (10) As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: (11) whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Basically, Peter is saying…‘Hey man, God gives you the gifts, so serve others. We are meant to glorify God in everything we do. Redeem your time, be a good steward of your gifts, don’t waste them.’

Comment by Tyler Thayer

Good post-thanks for the reminder. It’s crazy how much time I actually have when I look at it. A pastor of mine recommends a week where you write down every little thing you do from when you wake up til you go to bed. How much time it take you to eat, shower, commute, how much time spent watching tv and on the internet, every little distraction-everything! At the end of the week you look back and see how much time you waste. It’s disturbing!

Comment by Chandin

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