Archive for December, 2012

Reflection on priorities…12/19/12

Posted in Musings on December 19, 2012 by Ed Pettus

As I was riding home from racquetball, I heard the radio announcer on AFR talking about getting our priorities in proper order.  Of course, the encouragement was to put God first.  We hear this all the time about God first, others second, me third, or something to that effect.  The problem is that the Bible does not talk about getting a list of priorities.  Instead we are reminded that Christ is everything, our very life.  If I put Jesus first then something else second, I immediately diminish Jesus in my life.  If I must prioritize then here it is:  1. Jesus, 2. Jesus, 3. Jesus, 4. Jesus…

I completely understand the sentiment to prioritize in life, but I think this is more a worldly sentiment and not one reflected in our life with Christ.  “When Christ who is your life appears…(Col. 3:4 ESV)” Christ is not first in your life, he is your life!  Everything else is peripheral to Christ.  I enjoy the way Peterson renders the last part of Ephesians 1, “The church, you see, is not peripheral to the world; the world is peripheral to the church.”  The same might be said of our lives in relationship to Christ, “Christ is not peripheral to your life, your life is peripheral to Christ.”  Maybe the better image is Christ at center as opposed to Christ a first priority.  Jesus Christ dwells in you and the goal is to have only Christ dwelling in you.  Everything else is peripheral to Christ dwelling in you.  Paul uses the phrase “Christ formed in you” (Gal. 4:19).

Prioritizing Christ in our life is akin to saying God is a big part of my life.  Part?  I always want to ask about the parts where God is not involved!  I realize that folks are intending to encourage people to think more about Jesus in living their lives, but I also think it is important to understand that we are not setting Jesus first among all the things important to us or making Jesus a big part of our life, but the encouraging word from the scriptures is that Jesus is our very life.  My life, our life, is all about Jesus…his salvation, his forgiveness, his gifts, his blessings of family, friends, material things, and so forth.  Apart from Jesus Christ, I would have nothing – even if I had the most toys!  “All to Jesus I surrender,” all because Jesus is my life, our life.  Think it over for a few days, as I will, and comment if you have deep thoughts on the subject!