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Commit to putting God first in your life
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Is your life too busy? I would imagine that a number of readers would immediately say, “Yes, no doubt.” We certainly have a way of filling up the hours in every day, do we not? I recently finished reading a book entitled "Simple Life."
The authors, a father and son, interviewed hundreds of people around our nation, asking them a series of questions to determine if they were satisfied with how busy they were. The bottom line was simple, no pun intended. Most of their respondents wished that they could somehow simplify their lives in order to live by the priorities they claim.
Most of us understand that there are biblical priorities we need to follow in life. We need to put God first in our lives. Then our families should come next. And on down the line will come things like jobs, possessions, hobbies and other things. And yet, if someone were to examine our calendars (or Blackberries) and our check books (two of the best indicators of our true priorities), they would often come to the conclusion that we do not live by the priorities we claim.
Is that true for you? I know sometimes it is the case for me. On those occasions when I have suffered from heartburn, it has rarely been because of the kinds of food I have eaten. Rather it has been that I have allowed stress to get the best of me. I have majored on things that really do not matter in the long run, while neglecting the more important matters in life.
Let me encourage you to make a decision and then to follow up on it. Would you like to make your relationship with God a higher priority in life? Then don’t just say so. Make a commitment goal that is tangible and measurable. Write it down. It can be something like this. “I will emphasize my relationship with God over the next month by reading my Bible fifteen minutes every day, praying for ten minutes and day, and attending worship in my local church every Sunday.” At the end of the month you can evaluate that. For some of you this would be a step back. You would want to increase the amount of Bible reading and prayer. But for many this would be a good first step.
The beauty of this approach is simple (this time pun intended). You can take these steps. They are doable. And you can measure your progress. I am not saying that reading the Bible, praying, and attending worship are magical formulas that make life simple and easy. But I am saying that they are essential aspects to the Christian life. Do you really want God to be a priority in your life? Then make the commitment, and do it. It will make a difference in your life.

Butler is pastor of Pembroke's First Baptist Church.
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