Navigating the Valley

by: Jennifer Craine



April 29, 2020

Priorities, something we all make everyday most times without even a thought, let alone seeking God for guidance in prayer.

What are your priorities? What do they say about what you treasure and value most?

Do they resemble any of the items in red on the picture?

It’s easy to get drawn in to so many things, numerous of which are just pointless time killers. I know I’ll go to respond to that one email or text and get drawn into a FB notification for who knows what amount of time, or Pinterest, or words with friends, or spider solitaire... Maybe your distraction isn’t your phone, maybe it’s the tv, watching movies, sports, PlayStation, Xbox... Then again maybe you get consumed with your job, work work work, or projects around the house... It varies for each of us, but we all have these types of time consuming distractions or time fillers, because we are all going to fill our time with something. The question is what/who?

These things in and of themselves aren’t necessarily bad. However, the over abundance of time we put into them and then slight other things, is an issue. We tend to make these a priority and then neglect the people in our lives that should be priority.

God’s word tells us we are to tithe. Have you ever considered that you should tithe more than just your money? Everything belongs to God, so shouldn’t we tithe everything, especially our time? If we look at time like we do money, 10% of a 24 hr day, is 144 minutes, or 2 hrs. 24 mins. How much of your day do you set apart for God and to be in service to Him?

According to Matt 6:33, we are to seek Him first! It doesn’t say in some things seek Him, or in what you want to seek Him. We should seek Him first in all things, every priority, every activity... We need to go to Him in prayer and let Him guide our plans/priorities.

Matt ‭6:19-21 also tells us, that where our treasure is, so is our heart and that we should not invest in earthy treasures, but heavenly ones. When we pass from this world, we won’t take any material possessions with us. Our family will most likely trash or sale the majority of what we consider our estate valuables. To them, just things they aren’t interested in. Things won’t last. All that will last are relationships and love.

When we spend more time and money on possessions and distractions/time fillers than we do God, or our family and friends, we are telling them our heart is with the stuff. That the stuff matters more than they do. That we love it more than them because we chose time with it instead. Personally, I know this rejection and have felt the sting of how much it hurts when people important to you are “too busy” with incorrect priorities to check on you and invest in your relationship. I can’t imagine how hurt God must feel by us being “too busy”.

Jesus clearly tells us in Luke 10 (below), when He speaks to Martha, that we should be like Mary and spend time sitting at His feet, in relationship with Him, instead of being a busybody. Taking care of things is not a priority. Relationships and spending time together is priority.

Second Timothy (below) reminds us to flee from our physical lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace. These are the founding qualities of healthy relationships.

I think it’s time we all review our priorities and align them with God’s. His priorities are in green in the picture, Him, our spouse, and family and friends. Our focus needs to be on relationships and love, the things that will be stored up in heaven, and not worldly lust that won’t last. So instead of working extra, doing those projects around the house, picking up the remote, game controller, or phone... first pick up your Bible, say a prayer, spend time with God then your spouse, family and friends, before anything else. Serve God by checking on them, spending time with them, let them know their relationship is important to you and they are loved. They are priority!

And don’t try to do two things at once, the Bible says in Matt. 6:24 you can’t serve two masters... husbands turn the tv off when talking to you wife, kids, or friends... wives turn the FB off... give those important to you your undivided attention. We all know that you aren’t completely focus on someone when your doing more than one thing. Again in doing this, you are making the statement that the other time filler is priority, more important, more loved/valued because you can’t put it down or turn it off.

After God, people and relationships are the most important priority you’ll ever have. It’s time to get our priorities right. Grow in knowing God and then share His love and attention to others.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matt 6:33‬ ‭NKJV

““Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matt‬ ‭6:19-21‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”” Luke‬ ‭10:38-42‬ ‭NKJV

“Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” II Timothy‬ ‭2:22‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

““No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” Matt 6:24‬ ‭NKJV‬‬