Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost | August 19, 2018
15 So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. 16 Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. 17 Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.18 Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, 19 singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts.20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 5:15-20 New Living Translation (NLT)
So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Why does Paul give these instructions? I remember many years ago Petra sang the song, “Stand Up.” It pulled in verse 16 direction, but it used the King James. And I like the way the the King James reads, “Redeeming the time for the days are evil.” The newer versions say, “Make the most of opportunity in these evil days.” Either way you read it it means the same. God wants us to make the most of every opportunity he has given us. He wants us to share His love with others. He wants us to live righteously – to be careful how we live – to have a good testimony – not only in the testimony of our words but our actions. We are to weigh our actions carefully. We are to follow the Lord’s commands.
How do we do that? Paul gives us some great advise, “Be filled with the Holy Spirit!” It is only through the power of the Holy Spirit that we can live a life that is pleasing to God – to do the things that He wants us to do.
As a musician, I can really appreciate the next part. We are called to live a life of worship and we are to sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. This is just not singing any old song, but singing songs of praise of God. He says make music in your hearts. I love music and I love to express my love to God and his worthiness and my praise through music. Sometimes on a Sunday evening, I will grab my bass and play some old Christian music. Other times, I will grab my acoustic and plug it into my sound system and step up to the mic to sing songs of praise. When our heart is right, worship can be a beautiful thing and it can help us live lives pleasing to the Father. I think music is a great avenue for declaring thanks to the Lord as well, which is another command that Paul gives us. We are to give thanks for everything.
Here’s my challenge for the week. Make the most of every opportunity to do good – to love God – to love his people – to love your neighbor – and worship Him and give thanks!