Marji Laine: Faith~Driven Fiction

. . . Authentic and Intense

Grinding Away the Priorites

calendarLast week, Luke 9:23 outlined how we are supposed to be followers of Christ. The disciples trimmed away their daily activities and spent time learning at Jesus’ feet. That doesn’t mean that Peter, James, and John stopped being fishermen. On the contrary, they fished several times in the gospels after the Lord called them to follow Him.

I don’t believe they dropped their responsibilities. John’s mother-in-law got sick. Not only was he there, but he brought the Lord with him.

But the verse encouraged me to analyze my priorities. I’ve heard that you can tell someone’s priorities by their checkbook and their calendar.  More my calendar, but I’d have to concede the truth of that statement. In order to be sure that my priorities are lining up with the cross/burden that the Lord wants me to daily carry, I have to evaluate those priorities from time to time, as well as the activities in which I’m engaging.

I found 4 priorities on my list: Family, Money-making activities, Writing Career, Ministries. They aren’t necessarily in a special order as any of them can take precedence at any time, but with all of them, I have several responsibilities that I’ve been led to take on.

For example: My homeschooling includes organized sports of my kids’ choice. My twins choose volleyball (thankfully BOTH of them love it). But last year, we tried to let them take part in a traveling Bible memory competition as well as play volleyball. (Crazy-busy times crazy-busy-squared.) This year, we peeled away the Bible memory competition. It had no place in the priorities. Not for school. Not part of our ministry as a family. Certainly not part of jobs or careers.

Like taking a potato peeler to my calendar, we skinned that right off—along with a few other activities and even a side business—and found a much more livable schedule this year. One that could allow for a couple of other activities that the Lord laid into our laps, including a new ministry. And while it wasn’t easy to eliminate some of the past-times we loved, it’s always important to be willing to give up anything if the Lord calls us to do so. Check out my latest sacrifice!

One other exercise toward this effort is to plug each activity into my priority list. (And when I say “my,” I also include my girls since whatever they do affects my calendar.) Case in point, my girls had a homecoming dance last weekend. (Yes, homeschoolers know how to dance. LOL!) They weren’t interested in going. Neither was I, until their volleyball team decided to all go together. Then the event became a team-bonding activity. They had to convince their father, but because they attended as they did, the event fit into our priorities of school activities.

It’s like I mentioned last week, if we try to do too much, we steal from someone else’s jigsaw puzzle. If we don’t attempt what the Lord has set out for us, we’ll have holes in our picture. We have to achieve balance by listening to His Spirit and being willing to make changes wherever needed.

Your Turn: Is there something you can trim off of your schedule? What’s stopping you from cutting it loose?

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Author: Marji Laine

Marji is a homeschooling mom with teenage twins left in the nest. She spends her days transporting to and from volleyball, teaching writing classes at a local coop, and directing the children’s music program at her church. Raised in suburban Dallas, she got her first taste of writing through the stories of brilliant authors of their day, Mignon Eberhart and Phyllis A. Whitney, and through stage experience. After directing and acting in productions for decades, Marji started writing her own scripts. From that early beginning, she delved into creating scintillating suspense with a side of Texas sassy. She invites readers to unravel their inspiration, seeking a deeper knowledge of the Lord’s Great Mystery that invites us all.

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