February 2005


Hints for Handling Our Priorities During 2005

The arrival of the New Year brings with it new beginnings. It is a time for fresh starts. It is an ideal opportunity to assess how we used our time during 2004 and an excellent time to affirm, establish or re-establish Godís priorities for our lives. Let me offer four tips which I have found helpful in this area. Please look up each verse as you consider these hints for handling priorities.

1.   In Faith: Proverbs 3:5-6

Here the Lord promises that our paths will be straight if we walk in faith. We are urged to trust in the Lord with all our hearts and acknowledge Him in all our ways. Practically speaking, this means that we need to ask God for direction. When you wake up each morning, come to Him and ask Him to guide you that specific day. As you go through the day, lean on the Lord moment by moment. Sprinkle prayer throughout your morning, afternoon and evening, asking for ongoing direction. Use good common sense. But lean on His power to guide you rather than relying upon your own personal judgment.

2.  In the Spirit: Gal 5:16-17: Romans 7:18

These verses remind us that unless we walk in the Spirit we will not do Godís will. No good thing dwells in our flesh. And the desires of the Spirit and of our flesh are hostile to each other. When we are in the flesh, we are foolishly wasting our time. Here are some steps toward walking in Godís Spirit.

  • Ask God to search your heart and lead you in His way. Psalm 139:23j-24

  • Keep confessing and repenting of all known sin. 1 John 1:9

  • Be surrendered to God's will. Romans 12:1-2

  • Be filled with God's Spirit. Be filled with His Word. (Compare Eph 5:18 and Col 3:16). If you compare the larger passages in which these two verses are found, you will see the tight interrelationship between the filling of God's Spirit and the rich indwelling of God's Word.

3. In Wisdom: Ephesians 5:15-17

The Apostle Paul reminds us here that the days are evil. Therefore we need to be careful how we walk. We are to redeem the time.  This year let us be extremely cautious so that the important things in life get done. Determine the non-negotiables and donít com-promise! Things like prayer, feeding on Godís Word and family devotionals must be put on the top of the priority list. We need to put first things first!

4. In Faithfulness1 Corinthians 4:1-5

This passage tells us that God will hold us accountable for being faithful. In what areas will He hold us accountable? In every area where He has commanded us to serve Him, i.e., our jobs, marriages, nurturing our children, building up the church, the Great Commission. We cannot forsake one responsibility to fulfill another. We canít tell God we did not have time to nurture our children because of church responsibilities. We canít say we couldnít serve in the church because of family priorities. Nor can we say we were unable to reach out to the lost because of our jobs, or vice versa. One personís emphasis in a particular area may be different than anotherís. Personal circumstance will vary. But if we are to be found faithful, we must wisely balance each priority so that none are overlooked. 

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Community Church of the Santa Ynez Valley
240 E. Highway 246
Buellton, CA 93427