Aligning Our Priorities

September 1, 2007
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Colossians 3:17 – And whatever you do, in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (NIV)

Ephesians 5:15-16a – Be careful then how you live, not as unwise people but as wise, making the most of the time. (NRSV)

A woman in one of my congregations had numerous sayings, one of which was, "My mother used to say, 'I know you're busy, Isabel, but is it a good busyness?'" That is a good question for us to ponder. We are admonished to make certain our words and actions reflect our faith and also to make the best possible use of our time. Sometimes we are very busy doing insignificant things when we should be focused on important issues.

Ten years ago when I was easing back into work following heart bypass surgery, I was given some very sound advice. It was suggested that I prioritize my work by the "A B C" method. I didn't know what that meant, so I asked. "A" tasks were the things of greatest importance that must get done this week. For instance, I had to write my sermon for Sunday. "B" tasks were things that needed to be done soon but not immediately. Next week I could and would make preparation for that end-of-the-month meeting. "C" tasks were the host of things shouting for attention, but, frankly, if they were never done, it would make little or no difference to my congregation.

Guess what? We often expend far too much time, effort, and energy on "C" tasks. Our words and actions should bring praise to God. "C" tasks don't do that very well.

Prayer: Lord, forgive us for our tendency to focus on the "C" priorities, for it is the "A" and "B" commitments that really count. Help us to align our priorities wisely. This we pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.


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About the author:

Robert Garvin <garvins@telus.net>
Mission, British Columbia, Canada

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