Okay. So I know that this can be a tricky subject (and something most of us don’t want to talk about), but here goes—priorities.
It’s no secret that we’ve all got a million things going on. As many of us are going back to our jobs and our lives outside of quarantine, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. We’re trying to balance family, work, and all of those restful habits we started in quarantine that we promised we were going to hang onto. (Remember those?)
Our lives are all full of things we need to accomplish, spiritual, social, and vocational demands that fight for our attention. Here’s the thing: not all of those things should get the same amount of attention. All needs are not created equal, and we shouldn’t give them the same weight in our lives. That’s where a practice of healthy priorities comes in.
As believers, God’s glory should always take that number one spot in our lives. Regardless of what’s going on in our lives or what has happened to our schedule. We’ve been experiencing a season where our schedules, routines, and our lives are in a constant state of change. In cultural moments like these, we need to realize that even if the events of our lives are changing, our priorities can remain firmly in place. Jesus talked about this in Matthew 6. When he talked about the anxieties of the heart, he said,
“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness,
And all these things shall be added to you.”
Next on that list of priorities should be your family. That might be your spouse, kids, parents, siblings, or people you’re close to. God has given you this special community to draw you nearer to himself. If you get priorities #1 and #2 mixed up, it’s a recipe for disaster. You might think that you’re doing what’s best for your family by pushing God to the side. The truth is, unless the Lord at the center of your decisions, those decision will not be what is best for your family. As we’re adjusting to yet another new way of life, it’s important that we keep the #1 thing the #1 thing and the #2 thing the #2 thing. When we keep those priorities straight, it plays out in a beautiful way.
For me, as a follower of Christ, a husband, a father, and a pastor, I am constantly checking my priorities, making sure that they line up with this Scriptural model. God goes first, my bride, Lynn, goes second, and my kids go third. Then my job comes in fourth. We live in a world where people put their careers first every day, but that’s not how we were created to live. With every decision I make on my job and my ministry, I need to make sure it’s staying in its rightful place. If my decisions distract my focus from God or diminish my family, I need to rethink my priorities.
We all need to do a priority check every now and then. We need to consider how much time and attention we are giving to each area of our life. If you’re finding that your priorities aren’t lining up the way they should be, don’t be discouraged. God wants to do a work! Spend some time with the Lord, and ask him to help you align your life with his goals. When our priorities look like God’s priorities, we will find that our lives are balanced in the best way.