Growing in Faith
There are many occasions when we are asked to provide some of our time; through advice, support or companionship and so often we respond only by showing our impatience. We are pressed for time; we have very busy schedules; we are working to beat the clock. We show it in the hurried way in which we try to "get rid" of people in distress, so that we can rush on to whatever else is demanding our attention. This inevitably leaves the other person with the feeling that he or she is nothing more than an annoying intruder who has been pushed aside, or we ourselves may have felt that way by someone else's actions towards us.
The idea of giving your time sounds good in theory until you actually have to do it, then when you do your mind gets flooded by all the other things that could be getting checked off your "to do" list. To many people, giving time is simply volunteering. You do it because it’s the “right thing" to do.” Or, you do it because you were asked.
Yet, giving time is much more fundamental to our well-being than just volunteering or doing good things. It’s a foundation on which we can build a better life for ourselves while we build better neighborhoods and communities or to touch just an individual life. Paul said in Acts 20:35 "it is more blessed to give than receive". The wonder of Jesus' ministry lies in the fact that He had time for everyone. Despite the immense pressure that heavily burdened Him. He was able to accomplish more in three short years than what we accomplish in a lifetime, yet He was never hurried, impatient or tense. When you read the gospels you can share in that feeling of peace and calm that He radiated to everyone who came into contact with Him.
To be faithful to our calling as a follower of Jesus we have to strive to never show impatience or irritation when we are dealing with the problems or concerns of other people. We need to have faith that, despite our busy lives, Christ will always give you the time to do His work. We must trust Jesus unconditionally, let Him guide us, and we will be able to treat people with the same patience, compassion and empathy that He did. In doing this, we will become a source of encouragement, calmness and peace for others.
If you start giving your time with intention, every day, you will find that you will start to make a real difference in your life, slowly at first but it will change. People will start to treat you differently because you treat them differently. You will start to ask “how” can I do this, rather than “why.” You will start to see helping people as opportunities to be Christ-like rather than something that is a nuisance or that is stealing your time. Pray and tell Jesus that you open yourself to His Spirit of peace, patience and encouragement in your interactions with other people!
"Patience and diligence, like faith, can move mountains." ~ William Penn