From the Pastor :: February 2015

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Are you still enjoying your Christmas presents? One of the presents I received is a video documentary entitled, There’s No Place Like Home. This documentary follows the attempt of Kansas University superfan Josh Swade to raise $1 million in three weeks. Why? He wants to purchase, at auction, the original rules of basketball and bring them “back home” to the University of Kansas.

Spoiler alert: He succeeds by convincing Kansas alum David Booth to use his financial resources to participate in the auction and offer the winning bid of $3.8 million (including the buyers premium, the purchase price of $4,338,500 set a world record for sports memorabilia).

Following the auction, David Booth said, “I didn’t realize how much satisfaction this would bring me.” In a more extensive interview later, David Booth commenting on the reason for this purchase said, “I can’t imagine walking away that day saying, ‘It went for $2 million. That’s a lot of money. I’m glad I didn’t spend it.’ … The excitement that we’ve gotten from this … Why work? Why accumulate money? … If you’re lucky enough to have things work out the way they worked out for us, this is why you do it. It’s for these kinds of things.”

Many of us dream of being able to have enough money to buy whatever we want, but most of us do not have the financial resources to do the type of thing that David Booth did for the pure pleasure of doing it. However, there is something that you have that you can spend any way you want on anything you want. There is something that you have equally with David Booth: Time.

Last month I presented you with a calendar that hopefully made you think about the concept of time. This month I want to focus your thoughts on the stewardship of time.

No one knows how much time he/she has left. But that is true of everything. No one knows how much money he/she has left. I can create a monetary budget, plan, and save for the things I want to do or purchase in the future. But what if something unplanned or unexpected happens such as an unexpected car repair, a physical accident, a debilitating injury, dementia/alzheimer’s. Even with these possibilities, most people still have a budget or a spending plan.

It’s the same way with time. You might not know how much time you have left before you die, but you can still make a plan for spending your time. As a Christian, you are aware that the time you have is a gift from God. He created time when He created the world and He gives it to you to use, to spend. An important consideration in budgeting your time is how much you will spend in worship. When you consider the blessings you receive from God in worship through His Word and Sacrament, why spend time Sunday morning anywhere else? I can’t imagine, at the end of the 168 hours in a week, saying, “Two, three hours on Sunday morning, that’s a lot of time. I’m glad I didn’t spend it in worship and Sunday School.”

There are 168 hours in a week. Let’s assume a 50 hour work week (that’s high for some, but low for others). I’ll be generous and calculate 8 hours of sleep each night and consider 6 hours each day for meals and miscellaneous time spent getting ready for the day and getting ready for bed. All of that totals 148 hours which leaves 20 hours +/- each week to “spend” on anything you want. While David Booth asked, “Why accumulate money?”, the neat thing about time is that you don’t do anything to accumulate it. You already have it. The question to be asked regarding the stewardship of time is, “On what kinds of things will you spend it?”

Will you spend time on your family? Will you spend time helping others? Will you spend time with the Lord? Will you spend time on yourself? For the most part, only you can answer those questions. David Booth, who had the money to spend, seemed surprised at the satisfaction he received purchasing something, not for himself, but for his alma mater. I think you will be surprised at the satisfaction received from spending time with the Lord and serving others.

God’s Word teaches that the giving of firstfruits is pleasing to God. As you consider the many ways you can spend time, consider first setting aside time to be with the Lord on Sunday mornings and our special Midweek services during the Season of Lent. There are many things you mustdo: work, eat, sleep. Of the “free” time you have available to spend, I am certain that nothing will bring you greater satisfaction than spending some of it with the Lord in worship.

Blessings in Christ,
Pastor Dehning