I was a part of a “Time Management” workshop and the facilitator started the session by saying, “Lack of punctuality is a theft of someone else’s time.” Whew! That statement really penetrated the core of my being. He expounded further by saying punctuality is not holding others back with our inadequacies; it is a form of reverence which
respects the time of others, and acts quickly when God and others call on us. He said this shows that you care and respect others. It is realizing that time is important; the time of others is valuable. Time is a treasure and an investment that pays off in eternity. We are not to waste or take advantage of others. We are to strive to do our best with all God has given; including the time and
opportunities of our own and others. We were challenged to answer four pointed questions honestly:
1. How do I exhibit punctuality in my life?
2. What can I do to develop a better willingness to be on time, to show that I value people?
3. What blocks punctuality from working and being exhibited in me?
4. How can I make punctuality better, stronger, and faster, even in times of uncertainty and
The workshop enlightened me. It pointed out how our life and opportunities are very limited. When we detain others, we are infringing on their character and opportunities. We are, in fact, wasting what God has given us and preventing others from exercising what God has given them. When we impede or hinder others, we are
robbing them of their gifts and opportunities. When time is misplaced by overloaded schedules or fear, we become absent from life’s precious moments and opportunities, and, as a result, our effectiveness and character will be absent!
Later on in the session we divided into groups. We had to write a paper addressing six question:
1. How would you define punctuality? Are you a person who is careful about how he/she uses time? If so, do you slow others up?
2. What part does punctuality play in your relationship with family, friends, church members,
co-workers? How can mismanaging our time harm relationships, as well as other aspects of life and work?
3. How does being a procrastinator counteract punctuality? What is the cost to others when
you are a person who is always in a rush, and tardy?
4. What happens to your relationship with God, with others, and with the opportunities God gives
you, when you are hindering others?
5. Can you think of a situation where you failed to be on time, but, you should have been?
6. What issues in your life that would improve with increased punctuality? Do you use your schedule to glorify God and help others, or is it just a private matter where you are not concerned with time?
The group sessions were my favorite part of the workshop. In my opinion, many people consider punctuality not worth the effort of study and practice. We live in a time when we are slaves to the urgency of schedules and appointments, where our meetings and outings dictate our use of time, and even our relationships. We over-commit, and over-schedule, and do not give it a second glance. Yet, time is important, and our management of time will give others a glimpse of our priorities and character. We may not see our being timely as important but God does! We are on this earth for such a short amount of time-compared with eternity-and we need to make the most of our time and opportunities. When we are
careless with time, we hold others up, and miss valuable opportunities. Our time is a treasure that is given to us, and we are responsible to dish it out fairly, in a clear and concise way- to the best of our ability, and accordingly to the situation.
In closing, some of you reading this letter might say, “What is so bad, about consistently being a few minutes late?” “Does the Bible have anything to say about punctuality?” I believe I can show you that it does! To clarify matters, let me make it perfectly clear that I am not talking about one who is occasionally late or one whose good intentions to be on time are derailed by unforeseen circumstances. I am addressing the practice of arriving at places tardy more often than arriving on time. Consider an example of the five virgins who
were late to a wedding, as recorded in Matthew 25:1-13. They were unprepared for the coming of the bridegroom. Hastily, they attempted to get themselves ready and then appeared at the wedding only to find the door shut and their entrance denied. If these ladies had been on time, with the necessary supplies, they wouldn’t have missed out on the celebration they obviously wanted to attend. Consider Ephesians 5:16 “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil”; redeem means to “buy up for oneself.” Paul is
not asking us to buy back time, because once time is gone no amount of money can ever buy it back, but he wants us “to pay the necessary price in effort and sacrifice to use properly the time (opportunities) we have now.” These are some
routines the facilitator offered us in our endeavor to be punctual. It may benefit you, as well, to try these practical tips to help you, and your family, to get to places on time.
1. Have a plan. Resolve to get to the places ten or fifteen minutes before time start. Make your
definition of "late" as anything after that designated time, not the start of the event.
2. Set a goal. Decide what time you need to leave your house so you’ll arrive at your designated time. Make every effort to leave at that time – even if your hair isn’t fixed perfectly or your shoes are untied. If you make this consistent policy you will
know what to expect and will adapt accordingly!
3. Think ahead. Lay out clothes the night before or an hour before departure time.
4. Get organized. Gather any materials needed beforehand so it’s easily accessible when it’s time
5. Take care of physical needs. Eat; make
important phone calls, etc in plenty of time to be finished and cleaned up before it’s time to leave.
My friend, I know that you will find being punctual much better for you than persistent tardiness!!
Let’s pray: “Heavenly Father, help me to do
what promote holiness and separation of my life, my heart, my very lifestyle and every action unto You. In Jesus name I pray....
One Simple Nugget: “You may delay but time will not!”
All my love and
Minister Dorothy King