Make Time for Praise
Benjamin Franklin made the statement, "Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of." Henry David Thoreau said, "As if you could kill time without injuring eternity."
Have you ever wanted it to be tomorrow and not today? Or have you ever longed for past days? We waste our time on hurrying life or trying to slow it down. One person said, Once you kill time, you can't resurrect it." And as H.D. Thoreau stated, we are 'injuring eternity." We often put off the things we need to get done today because of the false notion that we'll have tomorrow to do it.
We forget that time is something we do not own. It is God's gift to us. How we spend every second of every day we're laying bricks in eternity. What kind of future in heaven are you building? Perhaps you are more concerned about this life. You spend every moment wisely to create a beautiful experience here. What are you going to do when death comes? If you are lost, you'll spend eternity in Hell. If you're saved, you'll be bankrupt in heaven. That would be a shame. Vance Havner said, "He who waits on God loses no time."
Think about that for a moment. Every moment you spend on yourself, you cannot get that time back. Every moment you spend on God, He holds that time for you for all eternity. Jim Elliot said, "He is no fool who gives away what he cannot keep in order to gain what he cannot lose."
Our God has given us explicit instruction on what we need to do with our time. Zig Ziglar said, "People often complain about lack of time when lack of direction is the real problem." So let's look at our text for direction from God.
"Sow in righteousness."
That means to deliberately do the right thing. The apostle James warns us,
17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
Is it right to praise the Lord?
1 Praise ye the Lord: For it is good to sing praises unto our God; For it is pleasant; and praise is comely.
Is it right to serve the Lord?
11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;
Notice that "not slothful in business." That means not wasting time. To not squander the time, we must be "fervent in spirit." That means to be on fire for God.
"Reap in mercy."
There is a reward for doing what is right. It may not pay in dollar signs, but it pays in mercy. Mercy, according to Webster, is "That benevolence, mildness or tenderness of heart which disposes a person to overlook injuries, or to treat the offender better than he deserves; the disposition that tempers justice, and induces an injured person to forgive trespasses and injuries, and to forbear punishment." Those drops of mercy are a foretaste of coming showers of blessing.
"Break up your fallow ground"
Fallow ground "Land that has lain a year or more untilled or unseeded. It is also called fallow when plowed without being sowed." To break up our fallow ground means to get it ready and get it seeded. It means to make use of our wasted time and spend it on something much more eternal in value.
"For it is time to seek the Lord."
There has never been a better time than now to seek God. We've no time to waste!
"Till he come and rain righteousness upon you."
It started with hard times. Hard times cause us to consider what we are doing with our lives. Then we start doing the right thing. Then we begin noticing drops of mercy. A few drops here, a drop there. Then we break up the fallow ground. This is where faith really gets to work! As we sow the seed not sparingly but bountifully, God will send the showers of blessing on us.
No time to waste. Start praising God now. Serve Him while you still can. Think about Heaven and the treasures that you can lay up there. Do not kill time. Spend it wisely. If we are too busy for God, then we are too busy. If we cannot make time for God, we must remember, we'll always make time to die. Whether we like it or not.
"Time is the best teacher, but unfortunately, it kills all its pupils." --Hector Berlioz