It’s hard to imagine finding the time to add anything to our already-busy lives, even if making a simple change might make all the difference in bringing us more satisfaction, greater wealth, or an abundance of spiritual blessings.
We know we should participate in daily scripture reading. Prayer should be a regular part of our lives. Spending quality time with our spouse and children should be a top priority. Giving service to others in our neighborhood, church, and community should be a top priority.
But where on earth will we find the time?
Because I currently balance two full time careers, people often ask me, “How do you do it all? Where do you find the time?”
The fact is, I never find the time—I must MAKE the time.
When I have a specific writing deadline, there is no time for television, playing games on Facebook, or going to movies. If I have an obligation for a conference or other presentation, I shuffle critique group, book club, and reading to other nights or spare moments. When I’m required to give additional hours to my teaching job, no excuses will suffice—I simply must be there.
Should I not do the same to make time for my spiritual growth as well? As the Lord reminds us, “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other” (Matthew 6:24). If we allow all of our time to be taken up in the pattern of everyday living, promising ourselves we will find the time tomorrow to start daily scripture reading or next week for family prayer, both days will pass and no change will come.
Just as we must do if we want to further our careers, we must also improve our spiritual moments by making the time, scheduling time for prayer, scripture study, attending church meetings, going to the temple.
Look for those brief segments of time throughout the day that could be better utilized. Do you have a commute, wait for appointments, or attend your child’s sporting events? Can you spend a few moments in quiet meditation, memorize an Article of Faith, or study a single chapter from the scriptures while you wait?
I calculated that by reading only three chapters a day, I can complete the entire Old Testament in less than a year. Since the scriptures are online, I can read them at home or at work without carrying the set with me. I can even download a free mp3 version if I prefer to listen. When it comes to prayer, the Lord is used to hearing from me often as I drive to and from my job. The car is quiet, I’m all alone, and I don’t have to worry about lots of interruptions as I talk openly with my Father in Heaven.
Finding time to improve the spiritual me will also pay off when it comes to meeting my temporal needs. If I make the time to develop my testimony, study the scriptures, and talk to the Lord in prayer, I know he will listen and respond when I ask for the things I might need. By making the Lord part of my daily routine, I will become the person He has meant me to be.
“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:21; Luke 12:34; 3 Nephi 13:21) and if I want a treasure, the first place I need to look is where I’ve set my heart.
And that is where I’ll find the secret of my future.