Principles of Timing
The rich and the poor have the same access to God’s given 24 hours: the rich makes use of it, but the poor wastes it altogether.
There was an element of time in the first sentence that opens the Bible: ‘In the beginning’, has an iota of time wired carefully in the first verse of Genesis chapter One. In as much as we have a beginning in the Bible, it is therefore necessary to look forward to an end, as recorded also in the book of Revelation in the same Bible.
The wise king of Israel, the author of the book called ‘Ecclesiastes’, wrote thus about time:
‘To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.’ – Ecclesiastes 3:1 – 8
In the light of this, it is therefore necessary for man to make good use of his days here on earth where time counts. The older you gets, the more time eats into you. Time is not anybody’s friend, but we can make the best use of it. Those who have respect for time are in most cases people of integrity that accomplish their goals easily in life. When time frame is attached to a dream in life, it becomes a goal. Without time factor attached, a dream is a mere wish at its best. God Himself at creation worked with a 6 days - time frame in mind. A goal is broken down into simple everyday plan. Nothing great happens by accident, people plan for it. With time habits are formed! Success of failure, time has a hand in it.
These is why we must as a matter of compulsory learn the Principles of timing, and teach our children, so they can show their generation the importance of time. Those with accurate understanding of these Principles are outstanding anywhere they are in the world.
- The Evening and the Morning Principle: This is a must key that opens door for any form of good success. God Himself through the bible documentations built the precept of evening and morning principle. The book of Genesis have it thus:
‘And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.’ - Genesis 1:5
From the very beginning in the book of Genesis, and also during the early age of civilization; the day and night were not put together as we have it in today’s world. Jesus asked that, ‘are there not twelve hours in a day?’ (John 11:9).
During Jesus’ time, the Jews begin their day from 6am in the morning and bring the day to a close by 6pm in the evening. So there were twelve hours in a day and twelve hours in the night. Every three hours period in the day are called the ‘hour’, and every three hours period in the night are called the ‘watch’. However, our own civilization and modernization has taught us to lump up the day and night together, and we were taught erroneously that there are 24 hours in a day. This principle recognizes evening first before the day, and the 19th chapter of the book of Psalm explains it better and clearer:
‘Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge’ - Psalm 19:2
The rationale behind this principle is to draw inspiration in the night time, when there is peace and quietness. It is upon this knowledge drawn in the night that you can work on in the day time. In a nutshell, we draw inspiration in the night, and put on activation in the day. In a simple language, you plan your day activities in the previous night. When you do not have knowledge for a day, you have no plan for that day; such day will fit into any body’s agenda. The evening and the morning principle is paramount to you not wasting your day.
2. Time Selection Principle: The bible says ‘Time and chance happen to them all’ – Ecclesiastes 9:11 this means that a good idea needs good timing for a good success.
Queen Esther carefully engaged this principle to launch a counter – attack scheme on Haman through the King. The bible bears the record of Esther’s wisdom in selecting the appropriate time thus:
‘And Esther answered, if it seem good unto the king, let the king and Haman come this day unto the banquet that I have prepared for him. Then answered Esther, and said, My petition and my request is; If I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition, and to perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for them, and I will do tomorrow as the king hath said.’ - Esther 5:4, 7 & 8
She was careful and skillful about when to say what. The first dinner opened door for the second dinner, yet it was not the right time to ask for vengeance. Time and chance were major players on the stage of this biblical theatre. Any attempt for Esther to fumble, she will surely go down the drain like bad rubbish. When it comes to burning issues in our heart, we need also to consider the right time for such issue. Esther would have to wait till chapter seven, despite the urgency of the matter, until the time was right. This principle of time selection must be mastered by all of us if we really want to get results. Surely, there are wrong timing and there are right timing in life, even if the petition is right.
3. Procrastination Principle: Idleness is conceived easily when we think that time is on our side. When there is no time frame, laziness becomes habitual. God Himself made the whole world within the time – frame of six days.
‘For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.’ – Exodus 20:11
One of the best leadership characters found in the bible is Nehemiah. His leadership was without any flaw, with excellence score on timing and planning. The task before him was not without a time – frame, the king wanted him back as the cupbearer in the palace, so a time was set by Nehemiah. Once the king approved the set time for his leave, Nehemiah could not procrastinate, he must get the task of rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem done on and in time.
‘And the king said unto me, (the queen also sitting by him,) for how long shall thy journey be? And when wilt thou return? So it pleased the king to send me; and I set him a time.’ – Nehemiah 2:6
4. Time Leakage Principle: This principle of timing hangs majorly on being focus.
‘Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.’ – Proverbs 6:6 – 8
Although the ants are small and weak, yet because of focus, they are able to store up food in the summer, and keep warm with enough food at winter. Our busy for nothing attitude coupled with no or little regard for time may give reason for Africa’s economic position among her peers in the world over. A Professor once suggested card – clocking for all civil servants in a country in Africa: they are to clock when they resume in the morning, clock when they are back from break, and clock when they close for the day. The idea was totally rejected because the nation does not see any sense in it. The popular phrase ‘African time’ may possibly have its roots from this principle. If you are traveling from point A to destination C; a journey of normal 30 minutes, and you see a friend at place B who is not part of your purpose for the initial journey, then your time is leaking at the friend’s place. Elisha instructed his servant, Gehazi, not to allow time leakage to truncate the mission he was sending him to do. He urged Gehazi to be focused. Hear him:
‘Then he said to Gehazi, Gird up thy loins, and take my staff in thine hand, and go thy way: if thou meet any man, salute him not; and if any salute thee, answer him not again: and lay my staff upon the face of the child.’ II Kings 4:29
Time is money!
5. The Front – Bench Principle:
It is likely that people sitting at the front at any function might get served first before those at the back. As a matter of fact, if care is not taken, those at the front seats might get served twice before the back benchers. This is also true of the multi – level marketing being carried out in most western countries. Economically, we say the market is saturated; so they take the market somewhere else. In the same vein, it is a mere wasting of time and of resources to serve those who have been served before. Jesus Christ dealt with this principle without any sentiment or emotion. Mark recorded it thus:
‘And Simon and they that were with him followed after him. And when they had found him, they said unto him, all men seek for thee. And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth’ - Mark 1:36 – 38
6. The Sand – Glass Principle: Little drops of water makes the mighty ocean. Our entire life as human beings comes in micro – units of seconds. Therefore, for a successful person, every second counts. Wasted seconds may result ultimately into wasted days, and if care is not taken, wasted days may result into wasted years, which might end up in wasted life. One should make it a habit to have a full – filled and fulfilled day before retiring to bed in the night. The bible put it in this way:
‘So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom’
- Psalm 90:12
This Scripture can be better understood only if we know that our days to be numbered are made of hours, which can be broken down into minutes and seconds. So we apply our hearts unto wisdom every second. This principle is vividly pictured with sand – glass that run sands from one compartment to the other compartment in seconds. The modern day edition, the clock, was constructed to remind you of how much time left for you here on earth. When you place your ear to the clock to hear its sound, what you are actually hearing is ‘gone, gone, and gone’; telling you as each second goes off of your life!
7. Time Catalyst Principle: By definition, a catalyst enhances the rate of a chemical reaction. It makes the chemical reaction faster than what it would have been without the catalyst.
This is also true when we apply encouragement as the enhancer of time. Everybody needs ‘encouragements’ at one time or the other in life. Many people have been frustrated in life just because they lack encouragement. A week full of various encouragements will run and look as if it is just a day! Even the best among us needs this principle, not to talk of those who are struggling along the wilderness of life. At a point in time, a man helped Jesus to carry his cross for a while. This is critical to all of us.
Having mentioned the above principles of timing, it is necessary to chip in how best to manage our precious time.
- Plan: In time management, planning is very crucial. This is the mental strategy worked out as blue print, put down in details to accomplish a desire goal or task. Planning gives direction to a desire goal, and ensures that time is not wasted.
- Priority: This also is a key factor in managing time. This is where we separate the needs from the wants, and the important from the necessary.
- Delegation: This is often used by the wise among men, when it comes to effective and optimal use of time. God has placed reliable people around you: if you BELIEVE in them, as they TRUST you also, you can delegate tasks for them to do. In time management, delegation makes you use your own 24 hours somewhere else, while the delegates do a task on your behalf. Generally, delegation promotes the maximum use of time generally.
- Rest: As simple as this sound, many top – notches and captains of industries never take the issue of rest seriously. Rest encourages the natural overhauling of the body system and to also reduce diminishing returns. As you offer sacrifice of praise to God, you must also offer the sacrifice of rest to your body. If you don’t give rest to your body, it will take it by force – sickness!
- Time Banking: This is simply saving time gained over a task, to be withdrawn and used judiciously for another task, project, vacation or rest. This often happens when we worked faster than the given time frame for a project or task. The time gained in such situation can then be bank, only to be withdrawn at a convenient time later. This time banking may spread and reflect over a lifetime. It is good to save time than to squander time.
Observe these principles of timing and manage your own time very well, then get ready for a full – filled life.
May your life be colorfully meaningful as you make use of your time on earth.
Preparing the Bride,