Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
— Romans 2:12
God. Family. Service. These are the three main priorities I prayerfully outlined two years ago. They still stand. Under each is a fleshed-out list of sub-priorities. They still stand too. They work together to help me live my life’s purpose: support. God created me to support and encourage other people. It is where I have always found my greatest joy.
Having this list has served me well. Like you, I face non-stop options. Few of my opportunities are bad. In fact, it is the goodness of some opportunities that makes them so tempting. Recently I was given a really great opportunity to facilitate a Journey Group at c|Life. Knowing it would interrupt already-scarce time with my husband, I asked his opinion. He said that he wasn’t worried about himself, but asked what it would do to me. This question set off an avalanche of re-evaluation.
I pulled out my list. Looking for where this service would fit, I realized I had strayed from my core priorities. I have quiet time almost daily, but I was neglecting other “God” priorities, like writing and rest. Under “family” I include taking care of myself and my home. Hmm… those were getting very little attention. Volunteering at Sharing Life is part of my “service”. Though it’s an indisputably good thing, working there two days a week crowds out other priorities. Studying Spanish is also on my list, and my Spanish II class starts soon. Not only was there no room for this new opportunity, but I also had some re-balancing to do.
So, I have recommitted to exercise. I have a writing project brewing in my mind, and I will be working to reduce my volunteer work. After I finish writing this devotional I’m going to start cleaning. It’s time to get my house in order.
If you haven’t done it already, I encourage you to take some focused and prayerful time to write out a list of your core priorities and the sub-priorities that flow from them. Compare your life to that list, now and annually. Return to it every time you face a choice regarding how to invest your time and energy. Live by it. You will have to say no to good things and yes to fewer things. And, you will experience the rewards of living a life that is centered on the purposes for which God created you.