Pastor Thomas Smith   -  

“Go, and say to Hezekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will add unto thy days fifteen years.” Isaiah 38:5

Since this is leap year, there are twenty nine days in February and 366 days in the year. This month, we have twenty four more hours than normal to work with. What a great gift! Most of us have expressed how much we need more time in the day or an extra day in the week. But what would we do with it?

Hezekiah was terminally ill, sick unto death. Isaiah the prophet informed him that he should get his house in order because he would soon die. This was devastating news for the king. He wept and prayed for God to be merciful. Hezekiah reminded God of how faithfully he had walked in truth and lived in a way that was pleasing to God. He did not want to die. Probably, in his mind, he had things in his life yet undone.

In the same situation, perhaps we would have reacted in the same way. We might even bargain with God, or promise that if He would spare our lives we would seek to use our lives more productively. The Lord heard Hezekiah’s cry and promised to extend his life by fifteen years. What an amazing gift…fifteen more years added to his life! When you think about it, what greater gift is there than a gift of time? For a child or teenager to be promised a gift of fifteen years might not sound like a lot, but for a man on his death bed, fifteen years of time would be an enormous gift. What an opportunity he received.

In reality, for each of us, every day is a gift from God. Hezekiah was blessed with an unusual gift, a fifteen year extension of his life. What would he do with this extraordinary gift? Interestingly enough, during King Hezekiah’s final years, he made serious spiritual and political mistakes. The gift of time he was given was misused and marred because of his poor judgment. The rest of our life is a gift from God, to be used for His honor and glory. I Peter 4:2 says, “That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.” The older we get, the more we understand how precious time is. James 4 says our lives are like a vanishing vapor. We cannot afford to waste time or to procrastinate.

Today is the only day we have. With devotion to God and sincere purpose, let’s make the most of it.