The title /played (“slash played”) is a common command used in several large scale games I have played. When entered it tells the player how much time they have put into the game; be it hours, days, months, or years. It’s a handy little function that’s been used both as a bragging point to friends and an eye opener for concerned family.
We deal with time a lot in our lives. Actually, we deal with time… all the time. Because time is the marker, or the organizing box if you will, we use to categorize our efforts, our money, our actions, our energy, our very existence! Things can get a little “duct tape around the head” when talking about time in the Bible, but I want to focus on the time that we control.
Romans 13:11-14 reads:
11 And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness and let us put on the armor of light. 13 let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.
Now continuing on in Ephesians 5:15-17:
15 See how you walk circumspectly (carefully), not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefor do not be unwise but understand what the will of the Lord is.
You should understand a few things from these two verses. First, is that time is fading. Every moment we spend, every hour we waste, everything we do is an effort which cannot be recovered. We are given a pile of coins (our lifetime) and are told to spend them until we run out (death). Second, is that time is an investment. Once those coins are up we are done. How we spend our coin in the beginning (what we choose to spend our time on, what we learn, who we interact with, how we interact with them) shapes how and why we spend our coin in the end (growth from our experiences, increased knowledge, life experiences, strong relationships, tempered character). Consider the parable of the talents in Matthew 25.
Let us be wise in how we spend our time. What we do defines who we are. It would be foolish to argue otherwise. Someone who spends all of their spare time under a car is going to be a “car guy.” He would be the go to for all his friends’ car questions and needs. Someone who spends all of their time watching the stock market and reading Dave Ramsey would be the “money guy.” He would be the go to for all his friends’ financial questions and needs. Someone who spends all of their time in the word of God, fellowshipping with brethren, attending lectureships, reading and listening to biblical commentaries would be the “Christian guy.” He would be the go to for all of his friends’ biblical and spiritual needs.
Consider who you want to be. Now tally up where you spend your time. Do the two of those things match up? You can’t claim to be the “car guy” if all you do is watch the NASDAQ and you certainly can’t claim to be the “Christian guy” if you’re never in the word of God, growing with your brothers and sisters, and studying with your family (both church and otherwise).
How about your conversation? What do you like to talk about, what topics are you well versed in, what makes you excited, where does your expertise lie? You can tell a lot about a person by what they talk about and how they talk about it. Are we zealous about our faith? Are we excited to talk to other Christians about it? What about non-Christians? How well do we actually know our Bible? You will find that the answer to all of these questions is directly related to how much time we invest in God.
When you type in the command “/played” the system doesn’t lie. You can’t fool it, you can’t control it, and you can’t change it. It is simply an objective representation of your efforts. If God, in all his power and glory above, were to hover over you and type /played. What would it reveal?