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Christian Time Management for the Artist

The effective use of time is crucial for productivity. There's much written on the subject, but mostly from a non-biblical perspective.

Time management is a skill that is best learned early, yet understood from the vantage point of eternity.

Our human tendency is to consider time as linear, progressing from one event to the next.

We have control over some events, while others control us. Time management gurus tell us that we must come up with a plan of action that limits the latter and purposefully multiplies the former.

While there's a huge measure of truth to that concept, it puts the burden on us to micro-manage our days or be doomed to ineffectiveness!

So out comes the Planner and we reign over our days! Imperiously assigning importance to some tasks, we consider others unworthy of our time. Time becomes the treasure that we dispense according to our discretion.

Effective Christian time management is different.

Think of how often you’ve heard of time being equated to money. Our language is peppered with terminology that reflects our servitude to time. We talk of 'wasting', 'spending', 'investing' and 'saving' time.

If time is equated to money, then Jesus’ comment that we cannot serve both God and Mammon (money), or in this case, Time, is equally valid.

So how do we avoid the pitfall of serving Time, instead of God?

Through Jeremiah, we are taught a more appropriate understanding of Time:

‘I know, O Lord, that a man’s life is not his own,

It is not for man to direct His steps’. Jeremiah 10:23

Christian time management must begin with the deep awareness that there is One who has earned kingship over our time. The sovereignty of Jesus over our time while liberating, does not absolve us of the responsibility of handling time wisely. We are not puppets on a string. Like all instruction in the Bible, boundary lines for living wisely are drawn clearly, leaving it up to us to heed or disregard.

  • Time is a gift from God to be received with deep gratitude. That is the first step to spending it wisely.

  • Your artistic calling, even if it is in its most fledgling state, is also a gift from God. He deems it valuable, so spending time in it is never in vain.

  • You are on a mission, which will only be accomplished by the most prudent spending of the days allotted to you.

  • Develop a sense of urgency!

  • Time is short and can never be relived.

  • MOST importantly, be led by the Holy Spirit.


‘Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.’ Psalm 90: 12


While time cannot be relived, it can be redeemed.


"See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil." Ephesians 5:15-16


Our comprehension of Christian time management is incomplete until we acknowledge our enemy, satan, who will stop at nothing to destroy us. In his arsenal is a particularly effective weapon of supplying distractions to derail.

Life must be lived, and in living it, we continually face the drudgery of chores. Some are unavoidable, however a large majority of them are only perceived to be so!

If you place enough of a premium on fulfilling your calling as a Christian artist, you can afford to delegate, avoid, or simply cast aside pointless activities that clutter your life and steal time.

It was a relief to identify plenty of chores that were obligatory, repetitive or insignificant from an eternal point of view! I merely delegated, ignored, or lowered my expectations, and that of others around me, to a more realistic level.

I remember being cautioned against permitting others to rent space in my head, or my life! Following that counsel forced me to be deliberate as there were many voices insisting that useless tasks were of utmost importance, when they were merely repetitive distractions.

As dutiful Christians we do much because someone else felt we ought to!

Evaluate carefully where you are called to serve and how. Watch out for obligations that are imposed by well-intentioned others. Listen and follow the Lord's voice.

Christian time management for the artist can be pared down to these essentials;

  • Spend time with Him to seek His direction

  • Create art as often as you can

  • Do not evaluate the caliber of your output. Work in faith and leave the rest to Him.

If you're told that you'd make a great Sunday school teacher, or hear about a terrific Bible study to take at church, evaluate those choices in the light of your artistic calling. Not every spiritual activity will further your mission. If God did not initiate it, it will steal valuable time away from creating.

Sometimes the Lord may want you to take up such activities to build your faith. If seeking His direction is an inviolate part of your day, you're unlikely to miss His will on activities that don’t further your artistic calling. My daily meeting with Him in the Secret Place is one of such sweet communion and also dynamic power.

Live generously at His direction. Live prudently by reining in your own tendency to be spread thin in a culture that is activity driven!

A laser sharp focus on a clear mission does not come without paying the high price of discipline.

Satan will serve you plenty of ‘second bests’. Ignore them.

Discerning God's best should not be confusing, if you have a clear call to art as your mission.

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