Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. (ESV)
Time is a funny thing. The older one becomes the more you become aware of just how quickly time has gone by. Here we are, approximately 2000 years past the time that the Apostle Paul wrote these words. If the hour had come for people to wake from sleep in Paul's day, how much more so for those of us who are reading this now.
What Paul is saying concerning "waking from sleep" is very important for us as believers. There is a tendency that we have to not be properly motivated to work as we should for the Kingdom of God. Paul David Tripp wrote in a devotional once that we are like practical atheists. We claim to belong to God. We believe the right things. Yet, we are not doing the things God wants for us to do.
The time is short. We need a spiritual alarm clock to help us awake from our slumber. Eric Clapton once wrote a song called "No Tears In Heaven." I take issue with that premise. Scripture says that God will wipe away our tears. What tears will he be wiping away in heaven? I believe that the primary tears that he will wipe away are tears of regret. We will be saddened by all we did not do.
When Paul talks about the salvation being nearer to us now than when we first believed he is talking about the final completion of our salvation. We are certainly saved now, but we are limited in how we experience that salvation. We look forward to seeing Jesus face to face. We look forward to no longer having to battle temptation. We anticipate a body with no pain or imperfections.
Wake up! Ask God to show you how he would like you to use your time. You will be in heaven soon enough. May that be the motivation you need to do the work your Savior asks you to do.