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Summary: A sermon about finding Godly priorities to live our lives by.

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Finding the Right Priorities in Life

John 4:31-38

Are any of you busy?

One of the great revelations of life is that while some folks will spend a lot of their later years relaxing, many people retire only to discover that if they hadn’t, they wouldn’t have had enough time to hold down a full-time job anyway!

My experience has been that at every stage of ministry I believed that I was a busy man. When we were youth pastors I believed that I was really going after it. We were really pushed for time. Then we became “real pastors” of a small church and there were weeks when I didn’t know how I would get everything accomplished.

About three years ago we moved to Rock Falls and it took me six months to get some sort of a handle on my life. It felt like I was treading water in those moments right before you know you can’t do it any longer. It was crazy!!

We’re busy people. Before and after the service I’ll talk to some of you and that’s the sense I get – your lives are filled with kids, grandkids, errands, ballgames, work, doctor visits, on and on.

Sometimes it becomes so much that the pressure begins to build and we become stressed. These next few weeks we’re going to talk about what it’s like to be under pressure and what we the Bible says we can do to deal with it.

No matter what stage your life is in, student, single, married, parent, grandparent, working, retired, there is pressure out there for you. I know it’s there. I feel it. Let me tell you that some weeks, as much as I love preaching and the fellowship of our Sunday services, I’m living for Sunday night. After about 8pm on Sunday there’s a window of time without pressure that I enjoy so very much!

Amazingly, those are some of the moments – when the pressure is off – when I’m most able to hear from God. He’ll just drop ideas and thoughts into my head during those times that get me moving toward the next goal or the next Sunday. That’s what helps me understand that maybe under pressure is not the most healthy and productive place for us to live.

One of the keys to dealing with and in many cases releasing the pressure we face is “Finding the Right Priorities in Life.” That’s what we’re going to talk about this morning.

If you have your Bible with you, turn with me to the book of John, chapter 4.

How many of you think that Jesus was busy?

We’ve talked in recent weeks about the fact that he was in fact inundated with requests for prayer and healing wherever he went. As a matter of fact, it became so difficult that he and his closest associates would enter and community and be swamped from the moment word of their arrival got out, so much so that there would not even be time for them to eat.

As a result, Mark 1:45 tells us, “As a result, Jesus could no longer enter a town openly but stayed outside in lonely places. Yet the people still came to him from everywhere.”

Jesus was a very busy guy! Often when people get busy, even in the ministry, they lose focus, or get easily upset. There can be times when they’re very difficult to deal with. But not Jesus.

How did he do it? He was clear in his priorities.

Read John 4:31-38.

What is the first thing that most of you will do today following this worship service? Most of us will have lunch. We’ll eat. Outside of the fact that I obviously enjoy eating, why would I make time to have lunch. Why would I eat?

Because eating helps me have the energy and focus I need to remain on course for the rest of my day. There are things to be accomplished that I’ll be unable to do unless I have energy provided through food.

What do Priorities Do For Us?

• Establish goals  give us direction in life

• Provide meaning for our activities

• Eliminate unnecessary complication

If priorities help us to remain on course to accomplish the most important things in life, they’re like food. Jesus said his food was what? “My food…is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”

Where Do We Find Our Priorities?

• Dictated by work or family responsibility

Work priorities are not always the same as personal priorities, are they? But during the hours you are at work, they have to take first place.

Do you want to be a good Christian at work? Then do everything in your power to please your employer and do a good job. Be the best employee in the place!

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