|Written by Patrick Morley|
|Monday, July 04 2011 00:00|
Teach your men how to set biblical priorities. A priority is "something to which we assign a degree of urgency or importance." Priorities become filters through which we sift decisions. Priorities are pre-decisions that act as tie-breakers between competing uses of time and money.
First, Jesus made decisions based on His priorities. "At daybreak Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for him and when they came to where he was, they tried to keep him from leaving them. But he said, 'I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent'" (Luke 4:42-44).
Teach men how Jesus handled priorities. First, people tried to keep Jesus from leaving. Perhaps they appealed to His compassion. The better job you do, the more people will ask you to do. Without intending to, people will ask you to do things that meet their needs but don't necessarily match your priorities.
Second, Jesus knew His purpose. He said, "I must preach the good news . . . because that is why I was sent." His purpose determined His priorities. He did not let the emotion of the moment cloud His judgment. Since He decided in advance what He should do, He was not distracted.
Third, Jesus did what He was called to do. The pressure to do that which is good but not best has put many wagons in the ditch. There is one great rule for priority living we glean from the example of Jesus: Make decisions on the basis of your priorities, not your pressures.
No man can do everything. Choices must be made. Setting priorities helps us make choices about how we invest our limited time and money. Teach that every man must take personal responsibility for his private life and set priorities in the following seven areas: (1) relationship with God; (2) relationship with wife (if married); (3) relationship with children (if a father); (4) vocation; (5) finances; (6) ministry; and (7) health, leisure, and rest. No one else will, or can, set a man's priorities. If he fails in any of these areas, people will feel sorry for him but they won't feel responsible.
For More: (1) see also the topics Balance, Stewardship, and Time Management; (2) read "Priorities: How to Decide What's Important," chapter 14 in The Man in the Mirror; and go to www.pastoringmen.com and click on "48. Priorities" to (3) see or hear "Priorities: How to Decide What's Important" in The Man in the Mirror Remix series.
Yours for changed lives,
Patrick Morley, PhD
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