Sunday, September 12, 2010

Time... How Am I Spending It?

Lately I have been giving a lot of thought to how I spend my time. Am I being a good steward of the time God has given me? I wasting the time God has given me? Am I efficient with the time God has given me? I need to straighten out my priorities and and get back to "first things first"?

After doing some serious thinking, I have to conclude that I have been guilty of both wasting time and being inefficient with my time. Generally I would not consider myself to be a lazy person, but I definitely struggle with keeping "first things first". I am often "busy" all of the time, but that does not necessarily mean that I am being busy at the right things. There IS only so much time in a day...24 hours to be exact...or 1440 minutes. Each minute is precious, and God cares how we spend each one of them.

I think I have been in denial as to how much time I spend on the internet. While I do not think there is anything inherently wrong with Facebook (well..maybe there is, I don't know!), I am embarrassed to admit that I think it's become a major time waster for me. I am hesitant to deactivate my account because I do like to keep in touch with some of my relatives whom I do not get to see very often. Through Facebook, I can see their photo albums, which I really enjoy. BUT I have decided that I need to set up some limits for myself because I am simply too undisciplined to keep myself in check otherwise.

Although I do not watch a lot of television, I do spend quite a bit of time on the internet, reading blogs, looking up how to do stuff, etc. The internet can be a good thing. I have learned A LOT of useful things from reading information on the internet. The thing is that if I am not careful, I can spend too much time on the internet when I should be doing other things. So, I am setting a time limit for myself.

God has given me the job of being a wife and mother. My time needs to be spent accordingly. My little one is only little for so long. These are critical times for training and teaching her, and I simply cannot afford to waste the time I have been given.

So, in practical terms, what is my plan of action?

1) Get off the internet. No, not completely, but I am going to keep track of the time and limit myself. For starters, I'm going to allow myself 1 hour a day in total online time. This hour online is for reading blogs, articles, writing on my blog, etc. I'm going to start with that and keep a log. Truthfully, I don't know how much time in total I have been spending online most days. I think 1 hour is very generous and reasonable (this is combined time during the whole day), and if I find I have to cut it down a bit more, I will.

2) Check my Facebook no more than once per day. I have a terrible habit of checking my facebook page each time I go on the internet. That has to stop. I gotta be honest...I think this will be a tough one for me. Ridiculous, I know. That's why I have to limit myself.

3) Go to bed at a decent hour. I find that I am just so tired all the time, and I really believe I have not been getting enough sleep. Our daughter (just over a year old now) is still not consistently sleeping through the night without waking up. We are at the point where we do not go to her at night unless she really needs something (besides just our attention) but she will still "complain", sometimes for an hour or more (not cry, but just make noise and play around in her crib) which still prevents me from sleeping; I am a VERY light sleeper. My goal is now to be in bed at 10:30 p.m. I plan on reading for half an hour and then lights out at 11 p.m.

4) Develop and stick to a daily schedule. I have been working here and there on this for the last little while. I am a pretty detail-oriented person who likes things to be done in a particular way most of the time, so this will probably be the easiest change for me. The schedule will be somewhat flexible. I mean...all mothers know that things rarely go according to plan, but I think that having some predictability in each day is a comforting thing and can help a person be more efficient with the time they are given. If the important things are scheduled in, I am more likely to get them done.

I am really hoping and praying that by spending less time on the internet, I will have more time to devote to the more important things in life. Maybe I'll keep tabs on myself by reporting in on my blog. No guarantees, though. I only have so much time now, right! ;) ). So, you'll excuse me if I don't blog regularly, won't you? I just have more important things to do!
Note how 1 Peter tells us to "pass the time of your sojourning here in fear." I'm going to try to be more careful with how I pass the time.

13Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

14As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

15But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

16Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

17And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

18Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;

19But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

1 Peter 1:13-19

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