Adolph Menzel created a painting titled Frederick the Great’s Address to His Generals Before the Battle of Leuthen. This historical piece depicts Frederick’s speech to his generals in December 1757 during the Seven Years’ War before their famous battle in Silesia against the Austrians.
In each day there are 24 hours, 1,440 minutes, and 86,400 seconds-and every one of them is a precious gift from God.
Time is something we feel we never have enough of, yet we give it away so easily. Someone once said, “Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back.”
Industrialist Charles Schwab was a key figure in Andrew Carnegie’s steel empire. Frustrated with his inability to get everything done, he once reluctantly agreed to meet with a consultant named Ivy Lee, who was recommended to him by John D. Rockefeller. Schwab had little use for consultants, but since Rockefeller recommended Lee so highly, he scheduled the meeting. Lee’s proposal was elegantly simple.
Someone once observed that a wasted life is really nothing more than a collection of wasted days. As God gives us life, each one of us starts the new year with the same number of opportunities—365—that we can choose to either use and invest in eternal things or allow to drift by without taking advantage of the gift we have been given. The difference between those who succeed and those who fail is not found primarily in talent but in diligence and effort.
Charles Francis Adams, son of President John Quincy Adams and grandson of President John Adams, kept a diary. One day he entered: “Went fishing with my son today—a day wasted.”
His son, Brook Adams, also kept a diary, which is still in existence. On that same day, Brook Adams made this entry: “Went fishing with my father—the most wonderful day of my life!” The father thought he was wasting time while fishing with his son, but his son saw it as an investment of time.
I got up early one
morning and rushed right into the day!
I had so much to accomplish that I didn’t take time to pray.
Problems just tumbled
about me, and heavier came each task.
“Why doesn’t God help me?” I wondered, He answered, “You didn’t ask!”
I tried to come into
God’s presence; I used all my keys at the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided, “Why, child, you didn’t knock!”
I wanted to see joy and
beauty, but the day toiled on, gray and bleak.
I wondered why God didn’t show me. He answered me, “But you didn’t seek.”
H. L. Hunt made millions as a Texas oilman. He was an aggressive businessman with little regard for time. His chief confidant, John, might be called in the middle of the night as quickly as in the middle of the day.
One night at 2:00 AM, Hunt phoned John. He excitedly declared, “John, I just made the greatest trade of my life. I traded the here for the hereafter… I just got saved.”
If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, you need to trade the here for the hereafter. You need to be saved. It is the wisest decision you will ever make.
Someone has calculated how a typical lifespan of 70 years is spent. Here is the estimate:
Source: Our Daily Bread, November 25, 1992
Submitted by the homiletics class of West Coast Baptist College
Married couples spend an average of 27.5 minutes per week talking to each other, according to Ray Bridwhistell, speech communication expert. However, they spend 46 hours per week watching TV.
Source: Family Life Today, June, 1989
Submitted by the homiletics class of West Coast Baptist College
On Sunday February 18, 2001, Nascar lost one of its greatest drivers. Dale Earnhardt, also known as “The Intimidator,” was in third place on the last lap of the Daytona 500 when his car was tapped from behind and sent head-on into the wall at 180 mph. In a matter of moments it was evident something was terribly wrong. Dale Earnhardt had died in the crash. On the following Monday an autopsy report revealed he had died of blunt force trauma to the head.
President Wilson once received a call in the middle of the night from a civil servant who informed him that one of his appointees had just died.
The caller said, “While I’m sure we are all saddened by this news, I would like to know if I can take his place.” There was a pause at the other end of the line before the president replied, “It’s all right with me, if it’s all right with the undertaker.”
Source: Business Wit & Wisdom, Richard S. Zera
A big-time sports fan was watching a football game with his grandchildren. He had just turned seventy-five and was feeling a little wistful. “You know,” he said to his grandson, Nick, “it’s not easy getting old. I guess I’m in the fourth quarter now.”
“Don’t worry, Grandpa,” Nick said cheerily. “Maybe you’ll go into overtime.”
A minister waited in line to have his car filled with gas just before a long holiday weekend. The attendant worked quickly, but there were many cars ahead of him. Finally, the attendant motioned him toward a vacant pump. “Reverend,” said the young man, “I’m so sorry about the delay. It seems as if everyone waits until the last minute to get ready for a long trip.” The minister chuckled, “I know what you mean. It’s the same in my business.”
Let’s pretend that your banker phoned you late last Friday and said he had some very good news. He told you that an anonymous donor who loves you very much has decided to deposit 86,400 pennies into your account each morning, starting the following Monday morning. That’s $864 a day, seven days a week, fifty-two weeks a year.
He adds, “But there’s one stipulation; you must spend all that money that same day. No balance will be carried over to the next day. Each evening the bank must cancel whatever sum you failed to use.”
In the book Time for God, there is a mathematically calculated schedule which compares a lifetime of “three-score years and ten” with the hours of a single day from seven o’clock in the morning until eleven o’clock at night.
If your age is:
When Leonardo da Vinci was painting his masterpiece, The Last Supper, he selected as the person to sit for the character of Christ a young man, Pietri Bandinelli, who was connected with the Milan Cathedral as chorister. Years passed before the great picture was completed, and when one character only—that of Judas Iscariot—was wanting, the great painter noticed a man in the streets of Rome whom he selected as his model.
In 1830 George Wilson was convicted of robbing the U.S. Mail and was sentenced to be hanged. President Andrew Jackson issued a pardon for Wilson, but he refused to accept it. The matter went to Chief Justice John Marshall, who concluded that Wilson would have to be executed. “A pardon is a slip of paper,” wrote Marshall, “the value of which is determined by the acceptance of the person to be pardoned. If it is refused, it is no pardon. George Wilson must be hanged.” For some, news of the pardon comes too late. For others, the pardon is not accepted.
The devil and his cohorts were devising plans to get people to reject the Gospel. “Let’s go to them and say there is no God,” proposed one. Silence prevailed. Every devil knew that most people believe in a supreme being. “Let’s tell them there is no hell, no future punishment for the wicked,” offered another. That was turned down, because men obviously have consciences which tell them that sin must be punished. The concave was going to end in failure when there came a voice from the rear: “Tell them there is a God, there is a hell and that the Bible is the Word of God.
A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street, going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching for kids darting out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something. As his car passed, no children appeared. Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag's side door! He slammed on the brakes and backed the Jag back to the spot where the brick had been thrown. The angry driver then jumped out of the car, grabbed the nearest kid and pushed him up against a parked car shouting, “What was that all about and who are you?