What Three Ticking Clocks Reminded Me

January 18, 2012

From where I was sitting by our gas heater this morning trying to warm up before I headed off to work I heard something. At first I was not sure what it was, but as I listened closer I began to recognize the sound.

See it was difficult to make out the sound at first, because it did not seem to have any regularity. It would tick loud and then soft. There seemed to be no rhythm to the differences. That is when I discovered I was actually hearing three different sound.

Clocks. Actually 2 clocks and a watch. The watch was sitting on a post right behind my head and the two clocks were on opposite sides of the room. The only three time pieces we have in the house (except cell phones) and they are all in the same room.

It got me thinking about how much of my schedule is driven by time. I have a work schedule to keep. The office hours are usually pretty regular. Then there are games to go to that have starting times, youth group, sunday school, meetings, and other random things that pop up.

Time is a wonderful creation. God gave us the sun, moon, and stars so that we could keep track of time. Even if Adam and Eve did not have a specific 3:36pm, they would have been able to tell where the sun was in the sky (and it never would have changed as a result of daylight savings).

Our society is driven by time. We need to be home by a certain hour to watch a show, get some work done, or make sure we see the kids before they head off to bed.

Our son usually wakes up between 7:30 and 8:30 every morning. The weird thing is, even if my wife and I go to bed late, he still gets up at that time! How inconsiderate! This causes us to go to bed at an earlier time so we are getting plenty of sleep.

Sometimes, though, time can rule us. See time was given to us as a gift. We are to use it as such. We have 24 hours in a day. Most people need about 8 hours of sleep, so that leaves us with 16 hours to fill. If we are not careful, other people can fill those 16 hours very quickly, leaving us with no time to do what we feel passionate about or no time to spend with those whom we want to be spending time.

We must set up priorities! If you have not done this, you absolutely need to! Sit down take out a pen and some paper, or type it up on your computer and then print it out.

Come up with no more than 8 major priorities in your life. List them from greatest to least. In order for this to work, you must be honest with yourself. You cannot be worried about what someone may say of your list. These are what you need to be spending a majority of your time on. You need to invest most of your energy in these items, most other things can wait.

I’m reading a book by Andy Stanley right now called When Work and Family Collide. In this Stanley mentions that we just do not have enough time to put towards all of our interests, this is why we must set up priorities.

What is most important? You should be spending most time and energy there. If something else is getting in the way of that priority, it is time to drop some items off your plate.

When we set up priorities, then time will not rule us. We will not be running around with our head chopped off trying to meet every demand. Instead we will be living a balanced life. A life that honors God.

Have you written out your priorities? What are they?


3 Responses to “What Three Ticking Clocks Reminded Me”

  1. Thanks for the beautiful post, Brandon.

    I have broadly categorized my daily time in this order: spiritual, personal, family, work, & friends.

    By the way, Brandon, what’s your take on managing priorities during emergencies?

    • That is a great question. I do not have that all figured out but I do have some thoughts. During an emergency we need to take a careful look at our priorities and make some slight changes but only temporary changes. I feel strongly that our walk with God always comes first. Even in emergencies we need his guidance. However, the other ones can make slight changes for a short time. It is probably a good idea to write up a plan and mark out what the end of the emergency would look like so that when the event happens we can go back to our normal priorities and we do not continue to put work or friends before family. By the way, I think your categories look great!

  2. […] What Three Ticking Clocks Reminded Me […]

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