Fifteen years ago, I read John 10:27. Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”
I read Paul too when he said, “Redeem the time!” Ephesians 5:16
Time management is a skill. Many computer programs, YouTube videos, self-help gurus, and intricate “manage your time well you idiot or die” courses, guilt, and bosses all sneer at you daily.
Time management is exhausting. Does anything work?
Sheep and redeeming time? Scripture teaches that your life was planned before creation, that God numbers the hairs on your head, and that you cannot do or think anything without God already knowing.
God wants you to manage your time for His purposes more than you do! He knows what you need to do today more than Bill Gates and the Microsoft Outlook calendar.
To eliminate confusion, reduce guilt and to get many things accomplished, I developed the “Sheep Redeeming Time” management system. There are several principles, but I will share the first one today in a paragraph or two down in this blog.
Then once a week look for “Sheep Redeem Time” Principles B, C, D, E, & F!
Does it work?
In the past week I had two staff meetings at church, 15 significant conversations or appointments, read two books (not comic books; one was on the trinity), read a novel, had morning devotions of Bible reading and prayer lists, wrote six morning Interruptions, had two First Steps one-on-one discipleship meetings, a Zoom First Steps conference with Russia, time with my wife, time with my grandkids, exercised every day, went through Starbucks drive-through twice, conducted a funeral, had a great evening meal with a couple from Fellowship, cleaned my back porch, renovated my garage, and many, too many, e-mails.
It was a light week as I did not preach at weekend or online services. My wife and I did not have our Connect Group.
I did ride a couple of miles on the bike trail with a friend by the name of Joe Stahl. Those two miles with Joe were more exhausting than anything else that I did all week!
Sheep Redeeming Time Principle A:
Before you get out of bed each morning, ask Jesus if there are any special assignments for the day. Then ask Jesus to solve or provide for your largest mind-worry of the day.
I eschew planning charts, programs, or calendars. I believe that Jesus knows everything. All that I must do is listen to Him.
Sheep Redeeming Time!
About six o’clock most evenings, Jesus says to me, “You’ve done enough for today. Go have dinner with your wife. I’ll take care of everything else that needs to be done.”
Peace – a hallmark virtue of the “Sheep Redeeming Time” method.
Sheep Redeeming Time Principle A, Example:
Last week on Thursday, I asked the Lord for any assignments for that day.
He said, “Send ________ a text letting him know that you are praying for him.” I thought, “Wow, an easy assignment today. Thanks. I have a lot of things to get done.” He said, “What is your biggest problem today?” I said, “I have to get the concrete on my garage floor ground today – yes, today – and I haven’t been able to talk to the contractor.”
(Note: Don’t even ask how I got into a situation where I needed to have my garage floor grounded by a large machine with diamond cutters that very day.)
Sheep Hearing Shepherd Works! As soon as I asked for the grinding to commence, my wife came into my office at home and said, “A large truck with a trailer just pulled up. Are you expecting anyone?”
Concrete ground and sealed on Thursday!
Later that day I received a text from my friend explaining victory in a long-fought difficulty.
Sheep listening to Shepherd redeems a lot of time.
It’s an adventure.
Advice to remember: God really does not need you to do anything today. He is more than capable of handling the affairs of the universe without you. He does want you to enjoy Him.
Enjoying God – another hallmark of “Sheep Redeeming Time”!