So you think you have no time? In a newspaper article entitled, “The American Century” which I read in December 1999, these words appeared – “The average worker needs 7 minutes of work time to purchase a half-gallon milk, compared to 56 minutes at the beginning of the century. A three-pound chicken requires 14 minutes of labor today, compared to 2 hours and 40 minutes 100 years ago.”
In the book, “The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power,” Robert Caro describes what it was like to live in the Texas hill country in the early part of the 20th century. He writes, “The source of water could either be a stream or well. If the source was a stream, water had to be carried from it to the house, and since, in a country subject to constant flood, houses were built well away from the streams, it had to be carried a long way. If the source was a well, it had to be lifted to the surface – a bucket at a time. It had to be lifted quite a long way: while the average depth of a well was about fifty feet in the valleys of the hill country, and in the hills it was a hundred feet or more. And so much water was needed! A federal study of nearly half a million farm families even then being conducted would show that, on average, a person living on a farm used 40 gallons of water every day. Since the average farm family was five persons, the family used 200 gallons, or four-fifths of a ton, of water every day – 73,000 gallons, or almost 300 tons, in a year. The study shows that, on the average, the well was located 253 feet from the house – and that to pump by hand and carry to the house 73,000 gallons of water a year would require someone to put in during that year 63 eight-hour days, and walk 1,750 miles!”
Do you still feel like belly aching about not having enough time? We all have the same amount, 168 hours per week. Most of us have far more discretionary time than those who lived before us. The question is: How are we using it? We have more opportunities than those who went before. Let us “redeem the time” (Ephesians 5:15-16; Colossians 4:5).