Sunday, September 26, 2010

About Prioritizing in Life

The Bible does not lay out a step-by-step order for relationship priorities in a single passage. However, we can still look to the Scriptures to see general principles for prioritizing our relationships. God obviously comes first: Deuteronomy 6:5 "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength." If all one’s heart, soul, and strength is committed to loving God, He is the number one priority.

If you are married, your spouse comes next after God. A married man is to love his wife as Christ loved the church (Ephesians 5:25). Christ’s first priority—after obeying and glorifying the Father—was the Church. Here is an example husbands should follow: God first, then his wife. In the same way, wives are to submit to their husbands “as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). We can draw from this the principle that her husband is second only to God in her priorities.

If husbands and wives are second only to God in our priorities, and being that a husband and wife are one flesh (Ephesians 5:31), it stands to reason that the result of the marriage relationship—children—should be the next priority. Parents are to raise godly children who will be the next generation of those who love the Lord with all their hearts (Proverbs 22:6; Ephesians 6:4), showing once again that God is first in our priorities and all other relationships should reflect that.

Deuteronomy 5:16 tells us to honor our parents so that we may live long and things will go well with us. No age limit is specified, which leads us to believe that as long as our parents are alive, we should honor them. Of course, once a child reaches adulthood, he is no longer obligated to obey them (“Children, obey your parents...”), but there is no age limit to honoring them. We can conclude from this that parents are next in the list of priorities after God, our spouses, and our children.

After parents comes the rest of one's family (1 Timothy 5:8), then fellow believers. Romans 14 tells us not judge or look down upon our brothers (v. 10), nor to do anything to cause a fellow Christian to “stumble” or fall spiritually. Much of the book of 1 Corinthians is Paul’s instructions on how the Church should live together in harmony, loving one another. Other exhortations referring to our brothers and sisters in Christ are: “…serve one another in love” (Galatians 5:13); “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32); “…encourage one another and build each other up” (1 Thessalonians 5:11); “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds (Hebrews 10:24).

Finally comes the rest of the world (Matthew 28:19), to whom we should go and bring the Gospel, making disciples of Christ among them. In conclusion, the scriptural order of priorities is God, spouse, children, parents, extended family, brothers and sisters in Christ, and the rest of the world.

Recommended Resource: Your Family God's Way by Wayne Mack.

Spiritual Sundays


micey said...

very nice. =)

sarah said...

there's order for everthing....interesting post.

Susan said...

Godly order.

Renee said...

Very good post...Never looked at love this way...Thank you for sharing.

Charlotte said...

You've got the order exactly right. This world would be so much better if everyone could get this right. Thank you for sharing.

Ginger~~Enchanting Cottage said...

These scriptures are so important,I should make flash cards with them and hand them out;)

Louis la Vache said...

Excellent post, Lani, and a much-needed reminder of what our priorities should be.

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