Summary: God’s second priority for us is our relationship with family (physical and spiritual). God desires for us to be reconcilers with those in our family, both in our relationship and in our relationship with God.

For those who may be joining us for the first time this year, we’ve been in a series called, "Your Bucket List." Which I borrowed from a movie which came out about a year ago called The Bucket List. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a great movie about two very different men, one a wealthy business man, the other a mechanic, who meet in a hospital room where they discover they have cancer and only a year left to live. Together they come up with a bucket list of all things they want to do before they...kick the bucket (hence the name of the list). And since they only have a year left they put everything else on hold and head out across the world to complete their dream or wish list before they die.

I know at first it sounds kinda hokie but I’ve been encouraging us to come up with a bucket list of our own, of the things to do before we kick the bucket. It’s really not that hokie if our bucket list is made up of the things which will really matter at the end of our life. In the movie they began accomplishing their dreams of going skydiving, racing a dream car around a racetrack, seeing the pyramids in Egypt, and the Taj Mahal in India. And I’m sure many of us could come up with some cool things to do before we die. Personally, I would love to go to Africa some day and go on a real wild life safari (Elephants, giraffes, lions, the whole bit), but is it really going to matter at the end of my life? The great transition in the movie is when they begin to discover that while those things were a lot of fun, they weren’t the things that were the most important. While the bucket list was a good idea, they hadn’t prioritized the things that really matter in a person’s life. Things like faith, our relationship with God, family and friends. If you discovered you had only a year left to live what would you like to accomplish in the next year? Perhaps another way of looking at it is this; what regrets would you have if you didn’t do them before you die? Again this bucket list we are making isn’t just an exercise in listing all the fun or cool things you always wanted to do but never got around to. It is prioritizing the things which will really matter but we haven’t got around to doing yet.

Let me read a few of the items that some of you have shared from your bucket lists.

These are great priorities for us to have. Let me ask you, what is stopping you from fulfilling these right now?

Last week we talked about the priority of faith. Where does faith get placed on our bucket list? Our relationship with God directly impacts every other area of our life; from our eternal destination, to our character, to the quality of our relationships with other people. We started with faith because it needs to be at the top of the list if we are to if we are going to have success in our other areas. Because then we do it with God’s power and blessing.

God’s Priority of Relationships

This week we begin looking at the priority of family, beginning with marriage. Check out this clip from The Bucket List where Carter and Edward have been enjoying themselves but share an honest moment.

[Clip of Carter (played by Morgan Freeman) as he shares with Edward (played by Jack Nicholson) his relationship with his wife].

As I watched this clip for the first time several months ago, it really hit me how easy it would be for our marriage to come to this point over the years. Before Elizabeth it wouldn’t have sunk in at all, but now that we have a child, and the busyness that comes with raising kids. I can see where it could easily happen, and I imagine many other couples find themselves in the same situation. Couples get so involved in their kids’ lives, sports, gymnastics, dance, music lessons, band, or they become interested in their own different activities or hobbies that they don’t spend time with each other. They forget to nurture their relationship with each other. As the years go by they get farther and farther apart, until they can’t even remember what it feels like to be in love with each other, or to holds hands. Some choose divorce, while others choose to be like roommates who happen to live in the same house.

Is it possible to climb the ladder of life only to get to the top and realize our ladder was leaning on the wrong wall? I’m not saying the wrong wall is being a parent interested in your kids activities. The wrong wall is our ignoring our relationship with our spouse.

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