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Seeds of the Kingdom

Time as a Gift

by Annalene Holtzhausen

22 September 2015

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Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone— especially to those in the family of faith.
Galatians 6:10, NLT

How often do we hear people commenting on how little time they have for all
the things they need to be doing?  Time has become synonymous with rushing
in so many people`s lives. It has, sadly, become a way of life.

This morning I came upon these words written by Ann Voskamp: `When we see calendars not so much as rows of boxes to fill up with things to do — but as boxes that we get to unwrap — the present moment always becomes a gift`.

Jesus called us to be a blessing to others; to build one another up in faith and to be a support during difficult times. But how do we bless others? It`s by really loving them unconditionally, spending time with them, listening to their hearts, building them up and helping where we can. It’s not by not judging and criticising one another. There’s no justification for us to set ourselves above another person.

There`s so much brokenness all around us, and sometimes we become immune to the real emotions people are battling with. It`s almost as if we feel we can`t handle another tragedy, sickness or trauma. We just hope someone else will support the person going through the trial. We speak a quick word of comfort, send an SMS message, and then get back into our own schedules and lives. We’re busy, busy, busy …

People need our time. They need someone willing to really listen to what they have to share. Sometimes they don’t even need our advice. They just need to put into words their feelings, experiences and struggles. God wants us to be people who really love others, not people who love others only when it suits them, or when others can notice them doing so. People need to experience unconditional love. They need to see God’s love expressed in everyday actions. Unconditional love is loving without expecting anything in return. When we really grasp the Lord’s perfect love for us, we don’t look for anything in people’s reactions and what we receive from them.

We should be sensitive to the times when the Holy Spirit prompts us to reach out to that one friend, colleague or neighbour, but also accept it when we’re not the one called to walk the road with someone in their hurting times. God knows exactly who needs who in their road towards healing.

‘From His abundance we have all received one gracious blessing after another’ (John 1:16). If this verse rings true in our lives, how can we not share it with our fellow man?  When someone has visited us, do they feel like a better person than before? I believe that’s how Jesus wants us to feel every time we spend time with Him.

The other side of this is that we also need time for ourselves. We need to stop for a while, take a look at our own hurts and take the time to work through them. So many people are aware of something they’re battling with and that they need to spend time with the Lord about it. The intention may be there to do so, but it just doesn’t fit into their schedule. There’s time for a quick prayer and a devotional, but not extra time to sit at the Lord’s feet and pour out their emotions and hurts, or go for help and ministry. Their reaction is often “I’ll do it sometime in the future”.

Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank You so much for loving me unconditionally. Help me to grasp Your amazing love every day. Without You, I’m nothing. You’re my reason for being alive, my purpose here on earth. Please help me to love as You love; without judgement and without taking offence, when people hurt or reject me. Help me to be a blessing to others in the same way that You shower me with blessings that I don’t deserve.  I honour You as my Father and my Friend. Amen.

Annalene Holtzhausen is on the Associate Team at Ellel, Africa. She is married to Renier, who introduced her to Ellel Ministries. She is a full-time mother to their two boys. Her passion is for the restoration of women’s hearts and for people to find their worth in the Lord.


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