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Making the Most of 2012 and Beyond!

As we launch into 2012, let’s take a look at God’s Word…

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. – Ephesians 5:15-16 (ESV)

What does the text mean by “look carefully then how you walk” (the NIV translates this “be careful, then, how you live”)? It is important and urgent that we examine our lives, that we pay close attention to our lifestyle.

Why? The short answer is because of all that God has done for us. In the first 3 chapters or Ephesians, Paul passionately describes God’s glorious plan for our salvation, reconciling all of us sinners to Himself through Jesus! Then, the rest of Ephesians (including our passage) urges us to live a life worthy of that calling, a life that gives God the glory! We don’t do things so that God will love us. We obey because He DOES love us!  And we live for Him as a response to all that He has done for us!

Next, we look at the phrase “making the best use of the time” or “making the most of every opportunity.” I’ve got to mention this here… the Greek word that is translated here as “time” is kairos. Kairos is the name of the college and young adult ministry at Granada Heights Friends Church in La Mirada, CA. Amy and I had the privilege of shepherding that great group of young adults while I was on staff there during seminary. Kairos means “the appointed time or season” and the young adult ministry was so named because college students are in such a critical season of their lives, a period when so many major decisions are made. Our desire was for them to “make the most of this kairos” by keeping Jesus in the center of their lives!

What about the rest of us? What KAIROS do we all find ourselves in now? Perhaps your heart desires to make the best use of your time but you are wondering HOW to do that? For a couple of specific reminders/challenges, here are two more Bible verses that use the greek word “kairos.”

Therefore, as we have opportunity [kairos], let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. – Galatians 6:10

Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity [kairos]. – Colossians 4:5

What opportunities are before you in 2012? What season of life are you in? We are ALL called to make the most of this KAIROS. How can we approach this new year with God’s purposes in mind? In the midst of the events and opportunities we face in our current life stage, are we thinking strategically?

But more than just one short time period of life, this passage reminds us that we must make the best use of ALL the time God gives us, ALL the days of our lives. We must not waste time or miss opportunities, but rather take advantage of time and opportunities, using them for God’s glory and His purposes!