Sunday, October 17, 2021

Time management

Sermon for the twentieth Sunday after Trinity

Just how do you redeem Time? 

St Paul expects us to do just that, "for," he says, "the days are evil."

What does he mean?


Time is not something that we understand very well. It just happens to us. We have no control over it. Unless we have a TARDIS, there is no way we are free to go back and forth within Time. If we have no control over it, how can we redeem the time?


When we redeem something, we buy it back. This is the whole point of our redemption by Christ. Christ buys our lives back with His very life. But whom does he pay?

There are lots of different answers that Christians give but in many ways the answer is obvious. 

To ask whom we pay is the wrong question. When we buy something back, we recognise that there is a debt to pay - there is something lacking. Now, when there is a lack of goodness, that is the presence of evil. In choosing evil in the first place, there is a lack of good that we cannot pay. We need someone purely good to make that payment and thus destroy evil. That Redeemer is Christ. That is how our redemption works: we need Our Lord to plug the gap in our goodness which we call evil.

And this is how we can redeem the time as St Paul bids us.


St Paul tells us that the days are evil. There is a lack of goodness that needs to be filled in our time. We can only rid ourselves of evil by filling it with Christ. It means that, as we face evil in each day, we need to bring it to Christ in prayer and, instead of contributing to the day's evil, redeem the time by doing something good. 

You may be familiar with a prayer attributed to St Francis. It isn't actually his, but it certainly expresses his sentiments. It begins, "Lord, make me a channel of your peace." It is a prayer about redeeming our time, especially when it says, "where there is hatred, let me bring Your love." That's what we must do in every thought, word and deed. By letting Christ into our lives, homes, work and society, we can begin to redeem the time from the evil in the days.


Christ gives His body to the world to redeem it. The Church is given to the world to make Christ's body present in all places and all times. As Christians, we are the means of giving God's Grace to a world that lacks God's goodness. How will you redeem your time, today?

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