“Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” James 4:13-14 (NIV)
I get asked for a lot of time management advice. Not because I’ve got this topic “figured out,” but because I’ve had a tremendous amount of practice seeking to balance the many different productive activities in my life. In addition to serving as the CEO of a venture-backed technology startup (Threshold 360), I am also an author, doing my best to help my fellow Christians connect the gospel to their work. At home, I am a husband and a father to two wonderful girls under the age of three. To say my life is insane right now is a bit of an understatement. But by the grace of God alone, I am “managing” it all and still somehow get 7 hours of sleep every night.
Managing my time well has long been an obsession of mine. Why? Because the Bible reminds us time and time again that our lives are “just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanish away” (James 4:14). God still has you and me on this earth for a reason: to love Him, to love others, and to make disciples of Jesus Christ. We are people of purpose. We weren’t created to just sit around and wait for eternity. We are called to engage in the world, to create culture, to be productive in serving the needs of those around us through our lives and through our work. In short, God has called us to join Him in His mission to redeem the world.
Given the magnitude of that mission and the ticking clock of time, we should be the most purposeful people on the planet, living with a healthy sense of urgency, always looking to make the most of the precious time we have been given. Over the next few weeks, we will dig into God’s Word together to uncover some time management principles straight from Scripture. But I will warn you now that this process isn’t easy. If it were, we wouldn’t all be perpetually struggling with this problem. At the end of the day, successful time management comes down to diligence and discipline (Proverbs 21:5). As we will see, being disciplined with our time will free us up to make the greatest contribution to the world on behalf of our Lord and Savior.