Happy Leap Day 2020—Deciding Not to Waste Any More Time
by Joanne Troppello
So today is February 29, 2020—Leap Day. This day happens every four years at the end of February so the next one is in 2024, 2028, 2032, and so on. Although, Leap Day does not occur on years that “end with 00 and are not divisible by 400.”
For more of a detailed explanation about the reasons and calculations for Leap Day, check out this article on Holiday Insights. One interesting estimation about Leap Day is that approximately only 1,400 people are currently celebrating their birthday today.
So, if today is your birthday, Happy Birthday and you are part of a very small group of people celebrating their birthdays on this special day.
In honor of Leap Day—and since this day was added to the calendar every four years “to ensure that it stays in line with the Earth’s movement around the sun”—I wanted to discuss time and how we could be wasting it.
An Extra 24 Hours This Year
In the grand scheme of things, an extra 24 hours may not see like a big deal every four years. However, if you lived to be 80 years old, you could experience 20 leap years which would amount to 480 extra hours in those 20 calendar years.
Likely, we don’t think about Leap Year often. It only happens every four years. However, since today is Leap Day again, it brings to my mind the idea of time and whether or not I’ve been using it wisely—or wasting it.
Am I Wasting Time in My Life?
If I’m being truthful, I have been asking myself this question lately even before I remembered that this was a Leap Year. As a middle-aged woman, I have been wondering if I am doing everything possible to fulfill my destiny in life or if I’ve been allowing life to get in the way.
I recently created a new banner photo for my Twitter account with this thought that was on my heart that I put into words:
In this world, we’re all trying to be relevant. In the end, the only thing that matters is if we confess Jesus Christ as Lord of our life.
I have been a Christian for 32 years. I got saved at a young age. The older I get, the closer my perspective gets to being Kingdom focused and having my eyes on eternity. I know I am saved. My name is written in the Book of Life. I’ll be going to Heaven when I die.
However, my good works will be judged when I get to Heaven. That scriptural truth has given me pause lately.
2 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15 Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire. (Rev. 20:12-15)
Things That Have Wasted My Time
There are things that have wasted my time. I’m sure some of these things may have wasted your time as well.
1. Petty Resentments
We’re all human. We’ve all probably had moments when we resented things people have done to us. Maybe we’ve resented God for not answering a prayer the way we wanted Him to.
I have been learning in recent years that petty resentments are a waste of my time. They take my mind off of my Kingdom focus and focus my thoughts on my woe is me attitude.
I’ve decided that I will no longer let someone live rent free in my head. If I’m offended by something someone did to me, they’re likely not thinking about how they offended me. I can’t become obsessed with what happen and allow it to overtake my life and thought process. That’s not what God wants for my life.
2. Not Creating
As an author, freelance writer, and magazine publisher, I wear many hats where I am supposed to create. I am on social media at times throughout the day to promote my books, articles, and magazine.
Yet, that can lead to a huge time suck when you get lost in scrolling through the feed on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn—and have stopped creating. Sure, you are writing tweets and connecting with others. However, that can become a waste of time if you spend too much of it there and not in creating.
Creating can mean many things. For me it is writing and spending time with family and friends. It can mean creating a positive impact at work and being a diligent team member.
Maybe it means creating great memories with family and friends when you’re not working—rather than spending too much time on social media—especially when your loved ones are sitting right next to you.
Believe me, many times I have gotten sucked into the black hole that is the Twitterverse. I have prayed about this and God has been helping me to better manage my time and spend more time creating and less time in aimless stagnation on social media.
3. Being Too Busy
Yes, life is busy. We have family responsibilities. Many of us have to work. We have responsibilities to our church such as service opportunities we have volunteered for or small groups we belong to.
However, I believe that being too busy can become a waste of time. We need to assess what is keeping us busy. Maybe there are things we need to cut out of our schedules.
I’m reminded of the story of Mary and Martha from Luke 10:38-42.
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the LORD's feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "LORD, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!" 41"Martha, Martha," the LORD answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed-or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
I love how Jesus says that “Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Wow. I need to read that again and again.
I’m the type of person who cannot relax. I feel like I should always be busy writing more articles or promoting my magazine to do my part to help make money for our household. Then there are times when I need to keep busy with cooking, cleaning, and laundry.
When I do find myself sitting down to relax, my laptop is always close by and my phone is within reach. I admit that I need to take more time in prayer, Bible reading, worship, and spending time with the Lord. This has been on my heart so much lately.
Will We Stop Wasting Time This Year?
I hope this article has resonated with you. These words have definitely resonated with me even as I wrote them. I want to stop wasting time this year. I want to let go of petty resentments more easily, start creating more, and spend more time in my prayer closet being less busy with the cares of this world.
About the Author
Joanne Troppello is a published author of 3 inspirational fiction novels and the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Mustard Seed Sentinel. She has experience as a freelance writer in topics such as marketing, retail marketing, health and wellness, SEO and social media, travel and lifestyle, website content, recommendations for apps, and content for blogs.