Efficiency (Psalm 90:12; 1 Corinthians 14:26-35; 40; Ephesians 4:23; 5:15- 16; 1 Peter 4:10) means being well organized, competent, and resourceful, making the most of every situation, doing our best and always seeking better ways to be a Christian in all that we do. It means knowing that God will hold us accountable for what is presented to us as well as for all we do with it, so, we need to be better stewards of our time and make our lives well-organized so we are capable of doing our best to serve God and others. With this character, we can do work in a more orderly way, always seeking the best way and means in all that we do-- from our errands, to organizing our worship services, in order to achieve the greatest effectiveness.
Unorganized, Incompetent, Ineffectual, and Inept are the opposites. The person who exhibits these negative traits will be unconcerned with planning or with schedules to the extent that it sacrifices time and prevents them and others of doing things better. With these rotten ideas come the political games, personal agendas, and time wasters, which create the strife and confusion that is found in many of our churches, as people tend to work against one another. The Bible calls a person who wastes his/her time a fool. Let us not be wasters of time but plan and be organized for His glory.
Benjamin Franklin said, a stitch in time saves nine, meaning, if you see a tear in your garment, it is best to sew it right away or it will tear more and cause you even more work. Our God is a God of order. He desires that we be efficient in order to do our best with what He gives us. He wants us to make the best use of our time and resources so we do not lose out on His blessings and the opportunity to be all that we can be. Work and effort are a part of life. Even before the Fall, Adam was commissioned to work the garden. We must do our work with the right mindset of seeking to improve ourselves so we can achieve the best and greatest results without sacrifice to the characteristics or our relationships. Thus, we are to do our best at our work but not allow that to infringe on our families. We are to have the best worship service possible, using the people and resources God gives. We are not to be disorganized or unprepared when we serve or worship Him! We should execute all of our activities in the most proficient way possible, so we have more time for God and our service to Him as well as for family and leisure. We must remember that our God is holy, and we are to revere Him as pure and loving, and then respond with this paramount attitude!
Efficiency equates to good organization, so, we need to see its importance and then make every effort to learn how to work together collectively as a community of Believers. We will become more effective for our faith, and the spread of the Gospel. We are to take a look at our desires and make sure they line up with His precepts. If they do not, we must change our way of thinking. Then we can create a plan to put our gifts, resources, and abilities into action in a logical, orderly way. We need to be able to see that our efforts to be better organized will make us more efficient and we will reap the benefits by having a better and more enjoyable life. We will have more time to work on relationships, and we will see what a precious privilege it is to serve in a better way. We should desire to be our best so we can live a life that is effective because it glorifies God, as well as having our best interests in mind, too. That does not mean we become "time prudes" and miss out on fun, as this character combines with the others for effective relationship building and community effort and togetherness. Our efforts are to be focused to benefit the entire community around us, from family, friends, church, community, and the rest of the world.
When we are moody or governed by reckless excitement and enthusiasm for the wrong things, we will surely impale ourselves with sin, and miss the great things that God has for us. Let us strive to be Christians who are well ordered as the Puritans said. We can be well organized, and not run in so many directions that we end up going nowhere. Let us be steadfast in our trust and obedience, and put forth the effort necessary to be our best, and remember that we are responsible to our Lord.
Is the Character of Efficiency working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this character and fruit of Efficiency from God's most precious Word by examining the passages below. Now ask yourself:
- How do I exhibit Efficiency in my daily life?
- What can I do to develop a better attitude about being a better time manager, even if I just like to live for the moment?
- What blocks Efficiency from working and being exhibited in me?
- How can I make Efficiency function better, stronger, and faster, even in times of uncertainly and stress?
· Here are positive examples from Scripture (Ex. 18:13-27; 35:30-36:7; Prov. 31:10-31; Luke 5:4-7; Acts 6:1-7; 1 Cor. 12:4-31; Eph. 4:11-16)
· Here are negative examples from Scripture (Matt. 7:24-27; 25:14-30; Luke 13:6-9; 14:25-33; 15:11-17)
- How would you define Efficiency? Do you consider yourself a person who is organized? Are you a person who runs in too many directions?
- What are the things that cause you not to be Efficient with your time and resources? Do others who are well organized frustrate you? If so, why?
- How does being unorganized counteract Efficiency? What is the cost to others (God, family, friends, neighbors, church, workplace…) when you are inefficient?
- What happens to your relationship with God, and with others, and the opportunities God gives you when you are disorganized?
- When have you been filled with Efficiency the most?
- In what situation did you fail to be organized when you should have been?
- What issue is in your life that would improve with more Efficiency? Are you willing to be an efficient person?
- Think through the steps you need to take to put Efficiency into action in a specific instance, such as how can you be a person who sees the value and importance of good time management? How can you prepare your surroundings and yourself so that you plan and execute your schedule to be proficient and resourceful? Do you put forth Christian Efficiency toward others, as you should? If not, why? What can you do to be better at planning ahead?