The word “Redeem” means, “To buy or win back”.

The measures we are having to take to reduce the spread of this virus has stolen precious things from us, production at work, time with friends, income, and our peace.

But, I believe that if you will seek God on how you can redeem this time, He will give you creative wisdom which could cause this to be one of the most fruitful seasons of your life –or, change the trajectory of some things in your life that will enable you to prosper in ways you wouldn’t have otherwise.

As I’m writing this, my wife, Hope, is watching, “Chopped”. One of the chefs was just asked how she became a chef. She said that she ended up being a single parent for five years after she was widowed. She said that when her son was sleeping, she couldn’t go anywhere, so she would just start experimenting. Now she’s on Chopped! That’s winning!

Did you know that Paul, the apostle, wrote many of his letters, which makes up two-thirds of the New Testament, from prison?

You may not be in prison due to the Coronavirus, though some of you may feel that way, depending on how many kids you have at home from school. But being quarantined can offer you the same opportunity.

Paul was under house arrest for two years and the Bible says he was,

“…preaching the kingdom of God and teaching the things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ with all confidence, no one forbidding him.” Acts 28:31

He did not sit around waiting for his imprisonment to be over, he redeemed the time by advancing the kingdom!

And I love what he wrote to Timothy,

“Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead, according to my gospel, for which I suffer trouble as an evildoer, even to the point of chains, but the word of God is not chained.”

The word of God is not chained. The Spirit of God is not chained. And if you ask God how you can redeem the time, you will not be chained either.

Maybe He will lead you to:

Spend More Time with Your Kids.

If your kids are home, don’t view them as a nuisance. This will get harder as cabin fever gets hotter, but remember, they will be gone one day, and you will miss them. Take this as an unforeseen opportunity to invest in your relationship with them.

Think Creatively.

If you are a leader, manager, or entrepreneur, take advantage of the creative thinking time just handed to you. This might be the space you’ve needed to take your organization or department to the next level. For instance, while being forced to connect remotely, think about how this could open a whole new dimension of productivity you wouldn’t have realized otherwise.

A great example of this is how we had well over a thousand people view our first virtual church service! That’s a few more people than have been showing up at our physical location. (Join us again this Sunday, 10:00am, on our Gathering Place Church Facebook page. Click “Watch Party” once you join and it will put it on your news feed – advancing the kingdom!)

Doing church from Facebook Live was nowhere on our radar a couple of weeks ago but it gave our church more exposure than it’s ever had, for free. And I know of one individual I have invited to church many times, who has not yet come, but who joined Facebook just so he could watch. He even commented.

Deepen Your Prayer Life.

If you have more time on your hands, close them and pray. This would be the best way to turn what the enemy means for evil to good. Wouldn’t it be something if you emerged from this isolation with a deeper relationship with God? Think about how many times you’ve said you don’t have time to pray, read the word, write worship songs, journal, because you are so busy. Well, see this as a divine opportunity to dig that well.

Finish That Half-Built Bridge

I was at a convention recently and heard a testimony of a Christian leader who mistakenly took a wrong turn and ended up on a half-built bridge. She saw the breach at the last minute and slammed on her breaks with only inches to spare. Immediately the Lord spoke to her and said, “How many half-built bridges do you have in your life?” Boy did that convict me. Does it convict you? Since I heard that I have restarted construction on a couple of half-built bridges in my life.

Deepen Your Friendships

Maybe you have some relational bridges that are half-built, or in need of maintenance or repair that you haven’t had time for. Call them today. Facetime. Zoom. Connect.

I have seen repeatedly throughout the years that when things change unexpectedly, or doors close, or I experience disappointments, if I change my perspective, God will do something new.

Ask God how you can redeem the time. If you do, rather than looking back at this season as one of loss, you will see how God helped you win!

“See then that you walk carefully, not as fools but as wise,  redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16

Redeeming the time,

John