By Chaplain (Col.) J Luke Pittman, NETCOM/9th Signal Command (Army)January 25, 2010
You can do all kinds of things with time. You can watch it, waste it, pass it or count it. But how often do you think of making time count' You cannot start, stop or change time. You cannot make-up lost time, but you can make good use of the time you have. As a new year begins, perhaps this is a great opportunity to think about how you use time. Similarly, as we remember Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this month and celebrate his birthday, maybe his use of time will serve as an inspiration for us. King lived on this earth for 39 years and made his time count.
An inspirational writer once wrote this challenging thought: "you should treat each day as if it were your last one, because one of these days you'll be right."
As you remember and relfect on the life of King, consider the notion that he made his days on this earth count in positive ways.
Consider that he made his days count in ways that changed the world beyond his days here. On Feb. 4, 1968, King used the words of a song to outline some positive ways to make time count.
"If I can help somebody as I pass along, If I can cheer somebody with a word or song, If I can show somebody he's traveling wrong, Then my living will not be in vain. If I can do my duty as a Christian ought, If I can bring salvation to a world once wrought, If I can spread the message as the master taught, Then my living will not be in vain."
As he passed along in this life, King was committed to using his time to help somebody. He made his time count by affirming the humanity, dignity and equality of all people, and by doing what he understood as God's will: "to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God". (Micah 6:8b NLT)
King made his time count as if each new day would be his last day. On April 4, 1968, he was right. The night before his death, King emphasized the urgency of making time count. In his speech that night at the Mason Street Temple in Memphis, Tenn., King said: "Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will."
As you remember King, think about how he made time count doing what he understood as God's will. May his words and work serve as inspiration for you. Make your time count by doing what is right, loving mercy, and walking humbly with your God.