How a laborer invests and spends their time
The apostle Paul said, “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time because the days are evil.” COVID-19 has provided an unrivaled amount of free time during this quarantine. Pain and suffering will be normal during this time around the world due to this virus but with the enormous amount of free time that we will have, we must use it to our advantage.
Quarantine has been nothing short of
unusual for me. Working from home, while
my wife is trying to survive the day with 3
kids under 3, has been interesting to say the least. The hours seem to drag by as I try to fill my day with meaningful activity but so far the only thing I have to show for it is
some valuable information about the Tiger
King and a thorough understanding of how
a virus spreads and how it can be contained.
As a campus minister, whose job is to share the gospel with the lost world, go deep in process evangelism, establish the faith of new believers and disciple the faithful few, it has been challenging to figure out how to see the vision of multiplication play out from my upstairs office.
Can you relate?
There are 168 hours in a week and if I’m being honest, I haven’t used them as wisely as I
would’ve hoped. Fortunately, I’ve made some course corrections to try to make the “best use of the time”. So I want to give you some keys to success in making this quarantine worth your time!
12 Ways to Invest the Time in Your Quarantine
1. Create Routine in your life. Routines bring freedom and confidence to the day. Set a
bedtime and wake up time for yourself. It’d even be a good idea to have a “going to
work” type mentality. From 9am-5pm, fill the day with what is most important. That
doesn’t mean that it’s all business the whole time but fill the time with what matters
most. Fill out your ideal week to help you maximize your time. It’s just ideal so don’t go
overboard with a rigid schedule but having just a general guideline for how you want your week to go could help a lot. When will you have your quiet time? When will you
work on school? When will you look at social media? Or watch netflix? Whenever time
is a free for all we typically don’t make the best use of our time. So be wise and schedule
out your time.
2. Do a bible reading plan together. You have more time to read the bible than you think. Stretch yourself in this area. If you committed to reading the bible for 35 minutes/day,
you’d read through the entire new testament in a month. What if you did a power hour
with 2-3 other people and committed to reading from 9am-10am every day for the next
month? Think of how much better you’d understand the bible and how much closer to
God you’d be if you dedicated that amount of time just to listening to him speak to you.
3. Read a book. Reading books outside of the bible has been very beneficial for my walk
with God. Make it a goal to read 1 chapter per day of that book that has been sitting on
your nightstand for the past year. You’ll be surprised how quickly you can get through
books by just committing to one chapter per day. If you don’t have one in mind, I’d
recommend picking up The Knowledge of the Holy by AW Tozer . It’s a personal
favorite. It’s only $0.95 on kindle!
4. Zoom your way to a deeper friendship. Social distancing can be hard. Virtual hangouts aren’t ideal but it’s what we’ve got so just jump on board. Peter tells us that the enemy is looking to isolate us in order to devour us like a lion. So be warned by the wise Proverb that says, “he who isolates himself seeks him own desire. He breaks out against all sound judgement.” When we are all together fellowship just naturally happens because of the natural rhythms on the week. That won’t be the norm during this season. Those who are
getting good fellowship are the ones who are intentionally seeking it out. Sean Vollendorf
once told me that you’re held accountable as much as you want to be. That statement
couldn’t be any more true than it is today. If you want to be held accountable to pursuing
God and making progress in your sanctification, it’s not going to happen alone. We need
someone to push us toward God and ask the hard questions.
Set up weekly time to talk through these questions:
● What have you been learning from the word?
● How have you been able to apply what you’ve learned?
● What sin do you need to confess?
● Do you need to seek restoration with anyone? If so how and when will you
● What have you not done that week that you should have?
● How have you used your time this week? What do you need to do next
week to use it more wisely?
● Who did you initiate spiritual conversation with this week?
5. Maximize your discipleship. Focus on content. Establish them in their faith. Those that
you are leading spiritually have the opportunity of a lifetime to drink from the firehose of
discipleship material. I’d recommend you start with The Establishers that Stumo has
6. Stumo Online. www.stumoonline.org is a tool that you should definitely take advantage
of. Use it for your own development but also as a tool to continue processing the gospel
with your friends. You could even make it a family event by watching it in the living
room. There is a weekly stumo talk, podcast and regular blog posts sent out that are
challenging and speaking to the times that we are in. Use this as a way to sharpen your
recruiting skills and invite as many people as possible to join you.
7. Continue processing the gospel. It’s not too late to share the gospel. People are
deprived of time around people. They are lonely, sad, disappointed, and looking for
something to bring hope to their lives. The gospel is what is needed at this time. Don’t
allow distance to stop you. Be bold! Share the gospel and watch God move in big ways
through the technology that’s available to us.
8. Invest in the spiritual life of your family. Sharing the gospel with your family or even
just encouraging spiritual growth can be hard. They know your shortcomings and see
your sin very clearly. So bringing up the gospel or potential areas of growth can be really
awkward. Sometimes the best way forward with family is just asking them to join you in
something that you are trying to learn. Be humble and learn together. Try to understand
their heart and not just show off how much you know.
9. Get that beach body you’ve always wanted. Paul told Timothy that “bodily training is
of some value” so let's not forget to invest some time in our physical fitness. Go on
walks, and runs. Do some push ups, and pull ups. Tony Horton’s P90X3 might even be
worth looking into. Whatever you do, get moving. It’s good for the mind and obviously
good for the body.
10. Pray like your life depended on it. We need men and women of prayer. Prayer makes things happen and also brings you into intimate fellowship with God. If you’ve never
experienced the life giving power of Prayer, this is the time to learn how to pray. Cause
lets be honest, you have the time. Pray for yourself and other believers . Pray for the lost .
Talking to God in prayer should be a regular part of our day right now.
11. Memorize more scripture. Paul says to “set your mind on the things of the spirit” in
Romans 8. What better way to do that than memorize scripture. Filling your mind with
the word of God repeating it over and over again to yourself will begin to shape the way
that we think and act. The staff team is memorizing Philippians 3 right now so jump in
with us if you’d like. If you haven’t finished TMS , jump back in and finish it by the end
of the year. Whatever you do, just memorize more in this season than your normal.
12. Limit your social media. Boredom makes social media really appealing. I’m not telling
you to stop it all together, although fasting from social media can do great things for our
spiritual lives. I just want to suggest you limit your social media to a certain time during
the day. If you do this it will free you up to enjoy your social media rather than it draining
your time. Pick an hour in your day and let that be your time for social media but don’t
look at it outside of that time. Just try it for a week and see how it impacts you. If you
have a hard time committing to a limit, have a family member put in a passcode to limit
your social media on the screen time of your phone.
Will you join me?
Can you imagine who you would become if you were to start practicing these keys to using your time wisely during this time? You would be a completely different person. You’d know God more intimately. You’d grow in your character, develop deeper friendships, increase in your knowledge and understanding of the bible. You may even get that six pack abs that you haven’t seen since well...ever but now is the time. The time is now to heed the advice that Paul gave so long ago to make the “best use of the time for the days are evil.”