Things which matter most
must never be at the mercy
of things which matter least.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Sometimes it is hard to keep our priorities in order. Little things can build up to seem like big things and we forget what was important to be doing in the first place.
A priority is that which is of first importance; those things in which higher value is placed. Our schedule reflects our priorities. When our priorities are not in order it's easy to allow circumstance and other people to set our priorities.
It isn't easy, for sure. But maybe you'll find this illustration as helpful as I did.
You have three jars, each one partially filled, one with sand, one with water, and one with large rocks. The challenge? Fit the contents of all three jars into only one. Some people might start with the sand because it would seem to take up less space.
But when you try to put the rocks in, guess what? There's no room.
But if you start with the rocks, and then add the sand, you'll find that it fills the crevices around the rocks. The jar looks full, but even now there's room for the water to leach through the tiny spaces between the rocks and sand.
It all fits as long as you begin with the big things. We have to focus on the important things and let everything else fit into the cracks that remain.
A set of priorities is a necessary measure by which our goals may be chosen and our opportunities evaluated. If, for example, your priorities include a fulfilling spiritual life, an intimate marriage, and deep personal relationships, then you can manage your self by means choosing the activities that support those priorities. If you never set your priorities in clear terms, then you will have no point of reference for selecting the commitments and opportunities that present themselves in abundance. Without priorities to guide your decisions, your calendar will be overrun with obligations that don’t fulfill your life.
And, to be honest, I have found that if I do not keep my priorities in line, God will adjust things as needed to put them back in order.
Wise are those who learn that the bottom line doesn't always have to be their top priority.
William Arthur Ward