You are an immortal being living in a mortal body. You have a finite amount of time, energy, and wealth. Physically-speaking, you cannot be in two different geographical locations at the same time. Therefore, life requires numerous choices.
The word “priorities” is derived from the word “prior”, which means “before”. It speaks of what is done first.
Given the finite amount of time you have today, your priorities ask and answer the questions: What thing gets done first? and What things get done before other possibilities?
Like no other human, Jesus knew the utter essentiality of clear and godly priorities. He said, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work” (John 9:4).
To be righteous, you must have righteous priorities.
Jesus explains why in Matthew 6:19-32. He says, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness! No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore, I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore, do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.”
His words emphasize the extreme importance of your priorities.
- Your priorities reflect the actual treasure you are pursuing (vv. 19-21).
- Your priorities determine your outlook on life and on your death (vv. 22-23).
- Your priorities decide the identity of your master who controls your will (v. 24).
- Your priorities shape your state of mind and the amount of contentment you have (vv. 25-32).
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:33-34).
Oh the extreme importance of righteous priorities!