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Time Matters

Updated: Jul 5, 2023

Dr. Bascom Ratliff
Pastor, Parker/Beagle/Fontana United Methodist Churches

The inspiration for today's message comes from James 4: 13-17.

Recently, I got a call from my friend, George, who wanted to visit. He told me his doctor had given him only a few months to live. His cancer, which had been in remission, had come back, and the doctor did not feel he was a viable candidate for additional treatment.

As we were talking, George remarked that he wished he had just a little more time. He still had things he wanted to get done and felt that with a little more time he could talk with his family and make peace with those around him.

As we continued to talk, I learned that he had a great deal of anger toward his ex-wife and his children. He felt his children did not accept his reasons for divorcing their mother. He was angry that he was leaving this earth without having an opportunity to make peace with those important people in his life.

What we do with our time matters. James reminded us that we do not know what tomorrow will bring. He tells us that our life is but a “mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes."

Only what we do for God and others really matters. Difficult questions for all of us are, “What have I done to serve God? How have I used my my time for the glory of God and for the service of others. Does my life reflect a genuine relationship with God? Do I serve others with a willing and gracious spirit?”

When we live for Christ, we are called to be enthusiastic and joyful servants. If we adopt the attitude that our time and service belong to God, our regrets at the end of life will diminish.

The challenge for us is to focus on the call of God to love and to serve. We have been provided wonderful gifts. The greatest gift is Jesus Christ. We remember that his ministry on this earth was limited. However, he made great use of his time. He loved and cared for others. He freely gave good news to others. His life was about service and sacrifice.

I encourage you to reflect on your use of time. Does your time reflect a lasting and committed relationship with Jesus Christ? Are you using your time to nourish your relationships and serve the living God? And most important, are you ready to thank God with a great appreciation and thankfulness for the time that he has given you?

Service First.


If you want to hear more about God’s wonderful promise of unfailing love and enjoy a great morning of music and worship, please come and worship with us.

We will worship at the Fontana UMC during June 2023.

We will worship at the Parker UMC during July 2023.

We will worship at the Beagle UMC during August 2023.

All services are at 10 a.m.

We serve communion on the first Sunday of each month. All are welcome.

Dr. Bascom Ratliff (913-710-5748)

Pastor, Parker/Beagle/Fontana United Methodist Churches

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