In this current crisis, some people are experiencing challenges using time wisely. Many people have time on their hands! But one benefit of this change is that our “no time” excuse for not devoting time to God has been taken away. While contemplating this thought, the old song, “Take Time to Be Holy” (William Longstaff, 1882) came to mind. The first verse is,
Take time to be holy, speak oft with thy Lord; / Abide in Him always, and feed on His Word. Make friends of God’s children, help those who are weak, / Forgetting in nothing His blessing to seek.
There is valuable application here!
“Take Time to Be Holy.” This phrase emphasizes the fact that you have to make an effort to get close to God! He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6), and we need to put Him first (Matt. 6:33; Deut. 4:29). Don’t let worry take this time away from you!
“Speak Oft With The Lord.” How often should we speak with God? The apostle Paul says “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17). During this time of anxiety, perhaps we would do well to turn to God in prayer (Phil. 4:6). He promises peace will follow!
“Abide in Him Always, and Feed on His Word.” In John 15:1-8, Jesus connects “abiding in Him” with hearing and obeying His word. His word is to be desired as a newborn babe desires milk (1 Peter 2:2), and it will cause growth. I can’t think of a better way to use time!
“Make Friends of God’s Children.” The early Christians loved to be together (Acts 2:42,46), and were encouraged to be “kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another” (Rom. 12:10). Though we are apart, we have phones, email, and social media to keep a check on one another. That’s a good use of time!
“Help Those Who are Weak.” When the apostle Paul was speaking to the Ephesian elders in Acts 20, he said, “I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak” (Acts 20:35a). Paul recognized helping the weak was a valuable use of time, as God commands (Psalm 82:3-4).
“Forgetting in Nothing His Blessing to Seek.” This phrase reminds us to seek God’s blessing in all things. The only way to do this is to seek His approval for everything we do (Col. 3:17).
Take this extra time and use it toward holiness!