Balancing our priorities often feels like a juggling act in this journey we call LIFE.
If you’re like me, I find that I’m often pulled in multiple directions. Each thing that is calling for my attention feels important, or urgent. In many moments, I get tripped up into wondering how in the world can I manage all these priorities?
*Time with friends
*Ministry to others
*An endless list of errands
*Not to mention the emergencies that come out of nowhere, suddenly grasping desperately for my immediate attention.
Oh, and of course somewhere in there I must make time for God. Where exactly does that fit?
I’ve recently had an opportunity to look at the way Jesus prioritized his life while he walked this earth.
Although he was fully God, he also was fully human, which means he had to prioritize his time. He couldn’t be in more than one place at a time. He had to choose where to go and who to see on a daily basis.
So how exactly did he prioritize his life?
Having just finished an amazing study called “Walking as Jesus Walked” (by Dann Spader), I’ve had the opportunity to take a closer look at the priorities of Jesus. Dann Spader uses an acronym to help us remember what exactly those priorities are: Holy Spirit POWER.
*First of all, Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit in everything he did.
*Prayerful: All throughout scripture we see Jesus intentionally making time to pray. He often withdrew to lonely places, away from the crowds to pray. If you look closely, you can see a pattern of his time in prayer. Immediately after teaching and healing, or before making crucial decisions, you’ll see him getting away to pray.
*Obedient: Jesus was characterized by obedience to God the Father. We see explicitly in scripture where he follows through with what God called him to do. He wasn’t just all talk. He didn’t just preach a sermon and demand his followers to obey. He modeled everything through his actions. He showed us how to obey God.
*Word Centered: Jesus quotes Old Testament scripture repeatedly. He constantly challenged the religious leaders about the scriptures. Notice how many times we find Jesus saying, “It is written”, “Haven’t you read..?” When tempted in the desert by the devil, his defense is not showing off his power by doing a miracle. His defense is the word of God. He pulls out powerful scripture each and every time to combat the enemy.
*Exalting the Father: Jesus beautifully models for us what it means to exalt God the Father. He always pointed everything he did back to God. How many times do you notice him saying, “Everything I do comes from the Father.”
*Relational: Jesus poured into his disciples. He didn’t miss a single opportunity to invest in his followers. He exhibited what it means to be relational. Being relational takes time. It takes energy. It is intentional. He could have focused solely on teaching the crowds. But you see him taking more time to pour into the inner circle, the twelve.
So if these were the priorities when Jesus walked this earth, then I think it’s safe to say that these should be our priorities as well. The apostle Paul says it another way by urging us to “follow me as I imitate Christ.”
You might be thinking, How can I possibly fit all of those priorities into my schedule?
I’ve honestly thought that before. But I think the real question we need to ask ourselves is this:
How can I align my schedule to fit these priorities?
What does it look like in our daily lives to align our time, schedule and decisions around the priorities Jesus calls for?
As I’ve come to grips with how I should be living my life, I’m realizing that I need a dramatic shift in my perspective if I’m truly going to live as a follower of Jesus. And I don’t need to look at these things as a check list.
Going about my day, am I being led by the Holy Spirit? Or am I being driven by pride and selfishness?
Am I truly praying throughout the day, staying connected to God? Or is my prayer life limited to only emergency requests?
Are my decisions governed by my selfish desires? Or am I seeking to walk in obedience in every area of my life?
Do I open God’s word only on Sundays? Or am I soaking it up consistently throughout the week, letting truth guide me?
Am I characterized by taking credit for all the blessings in my life? Or do I truly give glory to God for all He’s entrusted me with and point others to Him?
Do I spend my time only with people I’m comfortable with and can benefit me? Or am I pouring into others who need encouragement and the hope of the gospel message?
Dear friends, these are tough and convicting questions. But these are the questions I need to ask myself if I honestly desire to prioritize my life to honor God. And to truly walk as Jesus walked.
What about you? Which of these priorities do you already have in your life? Which ones do you need to implement?I prayerfully challenge you to look at how you spend your time and make your decisions. Instead of feeling perplexed and overwhelmed, I pray you’ll find PEACE.
Blessings to you,
Check out my devotional book, Embracing The Race.