David has been out of town filming God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness the past few weeks (and by weeks I mean months!). I have been playing the role of single mama since he left. So when the topic of priorities came up, immediately I thought, “all of the priorities are handed over to me right now.” By that I mean I am getting done what needs to be done and 90% of that is shuttling my kids around. I realize this is a season in life and these sound more like chores than priorities…
So then, what exactly are priorities? In my mind, there are three types:
BASIC: just what I was talking about above—running around trying to get the kids from place to place, home maintenance, laundry, dishes, grocery shopping, the day-to-day stuff… NOT to mention WORK! (I am able to work from home right now while being a full time Mama, but it is has been quite a challenge to get work done while dealing with a 3 month construction project and having multiple workers in and out of our home on a daily basis.)
RELATIONAL: prioritizing God, Spouse and kids and then all of our friends
SPIRITUAL: time with God. Prayer, church, worship, getting fed spiritually and feeding others via outreach.
David checks in via Facetime every day to connect with us. He’s aware of how busy it gets at home, and it is nice to have the kids talk with him and he always prays with us. I have my plate overflowing with Mommy duties, and unfortunately whenever I’m imbalanced my body screams back at me. So here we are again with some new unsettling symptoms that have arisen that need immediate attention. I have put it on the back burner in order to keep treading water and getting the kids where they need to be and when. I have a hard time with slowing down amidst chronic illness and a laundry list of daily to do’s. I’m not operating up to my full potential (and my fuse is a little shorter too haha). I know that our bodies are temples for the Holy Spirit and I need to honor that. While I often talk about all the shuttling I do, I truly embrace the mundane stuff because I’m fully aware that it’s time God has given me to connect with my kids. I’m grateful for this because I also recognize that it won’t be like this forever…)
On the other hand, I often get overwhelmed by my daily list of to-do’s… so in order to wrap my head around it, I find it helps to write lists and write down my schedule so I can visibly see it and then decide what I can cut out and where. It helps me to reset and prioritize and to be still. I feel like I run on adrenaline a lot. Do you know what I mean? If something is too much, you’ve gotta give somewhere… Delegating helps and just cutting things out completely is good too. It’s really refreshing to be able to clear my schedule here and there.
A mentor recently pointed out that there is a huge difference between “needing” someone and “wanting” someone—in whatever capacity that maybe be: friendship, romantically, etc. It’s healthy to want someone in our lives and to want to be in relationship with someone, but when we need them our priorities shift. Needing someone means kicking God off the throne and making that person a false idol. Suddenly the planets are rotating around the earth instead of the sun. We must need God in our lives, as our center and make all others are healthy “wants.” I have always tried to follow this dichotomy: God, Husband, and then kids.
And then there’s spiritual. How do we know that God’s priorities are ours? Well, I think if we can keep God first and honor God in all we do, we are on track. It’s easy to get distracted…but I try and prioritize through prayer: keeping my eyes on God, staying involved (whether it be a bible study, church, small group, etc.), being in the word and staying accountable with my Christian friends.
“Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always.” – 1 Chronicles 16:11
I know it’s a lot to wrap our heads around. It’s sounds so easy, but not really. We live in a culture where our kids’ sports games are scheduled for Sundays and we over schedule our lives just to keep up with the Jones’. So my challenge for all of you (and me) this week, is to look at our schedules and our lives and see where we can simplify… take some of the not-so-important stuff off of our schedules and above all, seek Him first.
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of it’s own” –Matthew 6:33-34
I will leave you with this… it’s all about perspective. We can complain and dread the endless tasks or we can look at everything through a lens of gratitude. Seasons and priorities change with circumstances. We have a choice in how we react to our life. We can focus on peace and his presence as opposed to being anxious, cranky and overwhelmed. Visualize yourself walking through the day in a calm, peaceful manner and cheers to balance, and to finding the joy in your daily to do’s.