Psalm 90:12 “Teach us to make the most of our time, so that we may grow in wisdom.” (NLT) “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (NIV)
When I quit working, I felt for a time like I was kind of quitting life. I knew that I was doing productive work by keeping the house and educating the kids, but I can’t really do that effectively without PWMs help most weeks because of the headaches. I still fight with the voices inside that tell me that I have to be “producing” and “doing” in order to justify my existence.
Notice, though, what the psalmist asks of God. He wants God to help him make the most of his time so that he can grow in wisdom. The last time that I looked, growing in wisdom wasn’t measured in number of patients seen or hours worked. Nor are there “wisdom points” counted by how clean the kitchen is or whether all the clothes are folded.
How do we grow in wisdom? Psalm 111:10 tells us that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. In Matthew 7, Jesus tells us that a wise person puts His words into practice. James 1:5 tells us that we should pray for wisdom if we lack it.
From just a cursory look at these verses, it appears that we are to use our time wisely to grow in wisdom by spending our time with Jesus and obeying Him. This can be done by working at home as a stay-at-home parent, working outside the home, or being at home with a migraine. Whatever the case, we are to be conscious of the fact that our time belongs to the Lord and to use this time well. We are not to overwork ourselves, but to take the rest that God expects us to take. At the same time, we are to immerse ourselves in His word.
In my case, I’m learning to accept the days when I’m not able to be “productive” in the usual sense of the word, but I’m also working harder at making sure that I make time every day for dedicated prayer and Bible reading. I’m sure that “making the most of your time” will look different for you. What it should not look like, though, is frantic or guilt-ridden. God wants us to give our schedule to Him, and then to rest in what He gives back to us.
How does this verse speak to you? How does using time wisely look for you?