Priorities

“And he answered, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself’ ” (Luke 10:27).

In one sense, God wants us to remember two things: Love Him and love others. Ideally we should not have to create a priority list and then rank them from highest to lowest. But just like the Sabbath, priorities were made for humans. These sorts of tools help us to remember the important things in life. We need to determine what God wants us to do, and then make sure nothing interferes with that.

How to determine God-honoring priorities.

1. Build into your schedule the things you know God wants you to do.
For example, we know that God wants us to attend church. The New Testament assumes its readers attend church. But in case some stumbled at that, God included this verse:

“Not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (Hebrews 10:25).

We also know that God wants us to know His Word and pray (2 Timothy 3:16-17; Luke 18:1). We, therefore, need to build time in our lives to read and hear God’s Word as well as pray. God has much to say about the family, and so we must also list that as a priority.

2. Do not be afraid to let high-priority matters crowd out low-priority matters.
Paul wrote that all things were lawful, but not necessarily helpful:

“All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything” (1 Corinthians 6:12).

Some things might be fine, but are they best and are they best for me? If they force out more important matters, we need to revise our priorities.

3. Remember, God gives us the time to do what He expects from us.
God knows our frame and limitations:

“For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust” (Psalm 103:14).

His unerring knowledge makes it impossible for Him not to understand our situation. Pray and ask God for wisdom to order our days in a God-honoring manner.

Finally, God does not seek to ruin our lives and remove all pleasures. He wants to be first in all things. When we place Him first, we know His loving and mighty hand rests upon us.

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