Now Is The Time
I have no doubt that most Christians want to do what is right. They want to be good Bible students; they want to teach their neighbors; they want to make use of their abilities to further the cause of Christ. So, what is it that keeps them from doing it?
Actually that’s a hard question. And what makes it hard to answer is that people are different. What might be the answer for one person wouldn’t be the answer for another. You’d have to know each person’s measure of talent, his background, where his best opportunities are, and perhaps a dozen other things about him to properly answer the question.
But there is one thing that seems to me to be lacking in almost every person who intends to grow and develop in the kingdom, who intends to be a good Bible student, who intends to reach out and bring some persons to the Lord, but never quite gets around to it. Urgency. A sense of urgency. And the Bible seems to agree with that assessment, for it is replete with such terminology as "give diligence," "give attendance," "be strong," "be instant," "take heed," "watch ye," "let us therefore fear," "give the more earnest heed," "exhort one another today," "let us run," and literally dozens of others which point up the disposition of urgency that ought to characterize each of us.
There are several reasons why we need to accelerate our efforts and intensify our attempts. Consider them and see if they won’t have you see the need for a sense of urgency.
The most obvious reason for urgency in our live is that time passes so quickly. Just turn around and a month has gone, then another, and turn around again and it’s a year. Things change. People get older (I know!). And how often have you intended to do something only to have the opportunity slip away on account of your procrastination? We cannot seem to learn that to put off something is not tantamount to getting it done. Procrastination can never serve for accomplishment. What deserves attention today should be done today. And no amount of mere good intentions will suffice for the doing. Just as an example, there is a kind of urgency attached to James 4:17: "Therefore, to him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin." Please note that the verse is set in a context having to do with time. There may not be any tomorrow, so we best do it today.
And so we see that since we cannot predict the future, and we don’t really know what’s going to happen next, we should do what we can now. But that same thing applies to others as well. We don’t know what may happen to others, either. How often have we intended to help someone know the Lord only to read about their death in the obituary column? How sad it is to think about the untimely death of some wayward brother whom we intended to admonish, but just never did get around to it. The cord of life is fragile, and no one knows when it will suddenly be broken. So it behooves each of us to do what we can today.
Talent that is not used tends to diminish,
while talent that is used improves. There is a kind of urgency involved in that. If we are to develop the abilities we have, we must put them to use. If we don’t, they will likely wither away. In the parable of the talents we observe both the joy of growth and the stagnation which is caused by inaction. The two men who made increase did so because they started immediately to put the work what they had been given. The one talent man lost even that sum of money he started with simply because he never used it. We are the same. We have to learn the value of using what we have at once, lest we lose it to habitual sloth.
There is work to be done in the kingdom. And there are not enough people doing it. How about you? Are you impressed with the necessity of doing what you can? Are you actively involved in doing today what needs to be done. If you are not, I beg you to understand the urgency of the present situation and begin at once to make use of the time and talent you have to carry on the work that needs to be done. No matter how much or how little you have, you should have a real sense of urgency regarding its use in the kingdom of the Lord.