What is your Priority List? I am proposing new ones!
Have you heard of the priorities list? Many churches teach it to help people know how to allocate their time according to the right set of priorities. It usually goes something like this:
I have heard this taught in a myriad of ways for decades. Here is a confession: I have never liked this list. I have never taught anything like this for as long as I can remember. The problem is that I don’t know how to practically use this list to run my life.
For instance, there are times I have to work a lot of hours at work in order to keep my job and to pay the bills. Work is definitely first at those times in terms of focus and hours. But this list says that I am putting my fourth priority first when in actuality I am doing it because I love my family. If I were single I would definitely be doing something else.
As a pastor there are times I have to spend a lot of time doing ministry. For instance, there may be a death in the church or a wedding to officiate or crisis counseling sessions. Should I not do these and make these people wait because they are the 3rd priority? Sometimes maybe, but I can’t do this all of the time.
What happens when I go on a family vacation for a week and don’t spend as much time in devotions? Am I putting God second?
You get the idea. To me ranking what I do as first, second, third, etc. is the wrong approach. What is first in terms of my time is constantly changing depending on the needs of the moment. Yes, God should always be first in my heart but in terms of quantity of time this may not always be the case.
I propose a set of new rules on how to live. I don’t rank these rules as first, second, or third, etc. I don’t think that is the right approach to allocating time. I propose that you live these 4 rules all of the time to the best of your ability:
Always Listen to God
Always Love Your Family
Always Work Super Hard
Always Live Your Passion