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This month I’m excited to be diving into the topic of priorities, because it is an issue that is so relate-able for me, and probably for you as well. Every day, whether we recognize it or not, we are faced with decisions about how to spend our time. These decisions reflect how we are prioritizing our various responsibilities, commitments, and opportunities.
Ephesians 5:15-17 is a passage that can help us think biblically about our goals in time management and what we say “yes” to.
“Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is” (Ephesians 5:15-17).
A few obvious objectives that we can pull from this passage are:
- be wise
- make the most of your time
- understand what the will of the Lord is
Practically, when faced with arranging our schedule or opportunities to take on new duties and projects, how do these objectives flesh themselves out?
Where do we get wisdom and how do we understand the will of God? By spending time in His Word and in prayer. As with everything in life, we must pray about our scheduling decisions. If someone asks you to be involved in a ministry opportunity or join a service project, let them know you take the commitment seriously and that you need to pray about it first. And don’t just say that—follow through and really seek the Lord’s wisdom.
It’s also important to note that juggling priorities begins with a heart of prayer and love for the Lord. We must be devoted to Him before we can devote time and energy to anyone else. How can we be “about our Father’s business” (Luke 2:49) or “understand what the will of the Lord is” if we do not even spend time with Him?
Talk to Your Husband
If you are married, it is really important that you discuss your calendar and day-to-day schedule with your husband. When a new opportunity arises that would represent a significant amount of time for you, never make a decision apart from his counsel and leadership. Your husband probably has a better pulse on how over-committed you may be than you do, and his perspective is invaluable. He is likely adept at recognizing how your undertakings outside the home impact life within the home, and can shed wisdom as you try to prioritize to God’s glory.
To say yes without checking with the head of your home would do a disservice not only to your family, but also to the body of believers you are desiring to bless with your time.
Evaluate This Commitment’s Impact
Can you take on this new obligation without neglecting your home and family? Titus 2:4-5 make it clear that our first responsibility is to our husbands, then our families. “…young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.” While there will always be a certain amount of sacrifice involved in serving outside of our homes, we must ensure that we are not failing to properly look after the precious souls who depend on us. Again, our husbands can help us in discerning the impact this new commitment will have. Perhaps, depending on the situation, a trial run may be possible to see whether you can manage it without neglecting your family.
This also ties in well with our first point, as no commitment should come at the expense of consistent time with the Lord. If we add something to our schedule and then find that we are failing to prioritize a quiet time with God, something must be adjusted to remedy that.
The Bible makes it clear that God cares about how we use our time. Are you making the most of your days? Are you characterized by being a woman of prayer and the Word? Do you seek your husband’s counsel? Does your family thrive or suffer because of your priorities? Perhaps it’s time to stop and reevaluate your schedule. May your time and energy be used to God’s glory and the service of the people He has placed in your life.