Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
SUMMARY OF SUNDAY’S MESSAGE
Most of our moments, days and even weeks feel ordinary and fairly insignificant. We have routines and rhythms in our lives where we don’t expect anything too different or world changing to happen. Yet each moment is pregnant with opportunity. These routines and moments actually form us, they shape our lives and impact those around us. Sometimes we realise only as we look back, that a moment which we considered to be insignificant was actually life changing. It’s normally when someone shares their world with us or when we invite someone into our space.
Paul is saying here in Ephesians that the wise understand that every moment should be made the most of, that every interaction is significant, that every conversation can bring change and is an opportunity to share our world.
Most significant moments in our lives happen when other people have shared with us. It could be as simple as sharing their food or as deep as sharing their heart’s desires and longings. In sharing they open up a way for us to access something for free. They invite us into their story.
Many of us are followers of Jesus because someone shared their faith with us. We are part of CCV because someone invited us. When people share and invite us into their world, something moves and unlocks for us. What’s true for us as individuals is also true for us as a church. As our lives are transformed, we open up and share ourselves with the wider community.
The Apostle Paul tells us why we make the most of every opportunity to share our lives and faith: “…because the days are evil.”
Life is hard on people and life is hard for people. It could be a doctor’s diagnosis, a family bereavement, broken relationships or, as we look at the wider world, conflict, disease and pain. It can be difficult to hold onto hope in the midst of darkness and suffering. Yet people around us are desperate for hope, they long for someone to share hope with them.
It would be great if God would highlight significant moments and people in advance so that we know where to focus our energy and time. But we simply don't know. That is why every opportunity is important, that is why we make the most of each interaction and conversation. Small moments can become exceptional as we seize them with bold faith and expectant hope.
Sometimes we postpone stepping out until there's a better opportunity or because we are dealing with our own issues. Logic says, “Hold back, the days are evil.” Yet the Word of God calls us to, “Push in.”
As we approach Easter we recognise that for Jesus’ first followers, as Jesus hung on the cross, that Friday must have felt like the most evil of days. Yet the greatest hope was hidden in the heartache and pain. Resurrection life was buried in the darkness.
We never know which moments are going to be life transforming. It’s only as we make the most of every opportunity that we move past the awkward into the awesome.
Who will you share your world with this week? Where will you seize each opportunity to connect with those around you? Be intentional as you pray, share and invite.
It was announced that from September 2017, Leo (currently working with Pais) and Bri (staff intern) will be coming on staff at CCV to lead youth ministry. Ryan Lennon has joined the team to help with youth and schools work, prison ministry and Alpha. Also, current intern Will Hooper will be returning in September to be part of the team leading our youth.