Priorities. What are some of yours?
Today, I finally planted my wildflower seeds.
I have a garden!
Well, sort of.
Thankfully, I probably won’t have to weed mine—because I planted the flowers in a basket! It’s a big basket, but still. No pesky dandelions or grass clumps! I will be sure to post pictures of the flowers as they progress, so if you haven’t found me yet on Instagram or Facebook, you can click that follow button and see how they’re doing, too!. 😉
So, anyway, why am I sharing all this with you?
It just seems to me that everyone, especially those who live in a place that gets a lot of dark, snowy days, LOVES springtime. Maybe if you have allergies you love it a little less.
What an awesome opportunity Spring gives us to apply the Gospel to our womanhood!
Everywhere you look, dead things are coming to life, newborn baby animals are following their mamas, the skies declare the glory of God from early till late and all night long, and the spring-cleaning of our dank, dusty homes is begun.
If you’re really looking, you can always find things that point to God, His character, and His Gospel.
And THAT, my friends, is why I am sharing about the wildflowers I planted today. 😉 I glimpsed a Bible truth as I was planting.
You know how I said I wouldn’t have to weed my mini garden of flowers? It’s true, I probably won’t have to. But let’s pretend.
When is it easiest to pull weeds?
Is it when you’ve allowed them to get so tall that you don’t have to bend over to reach them? No, of course not! Weeds are most easily disposed of when they are tiny, and their roots are tiny as well.
My mom used to give this illustration in Sunday school with a poke berry weed. When they first grow, they are very small. But if left to themselves, the weed’s root gets as big around as a silver dollar! That puppy takes a lot of work to get out of a garden. You can’t just pull it—you need a shovel and some serious bicep strength! Mom would then talk about sin. You should be sensitive to your sins when they are small and easy to eradicate, instead of ignoring them and letting them become a huge problem in your life. I always loved that analogy because of the great visual picture it gave me—I never forgot that lesson! One of my biggest priorities should be keeping a short sin account with God.Struggle with setting right priorities? Get some great tips on the blog! #thrivinginwomanhood… Click To Tweet
But, while I do struggle with many sins like impatience, bitterness, selfishness, and pride, I find that often where I trip up is in doing things that aren’t NECESSARILY sin—watching a certain show, listening to a certain song, spending just a little too much money, having a frustrated attitude when I have every right to be frustrated, placing too much value on a goal that is not eternally significant—you know, the Bible doesn’t SAY it’s wrong, so…
Wildflowers are a little like that.
Even though they have no value as far as the pantry or the fridge goes, we still plant them because we enjoy their colors and scents.
But, to someone who is depending on their garden for nourishment through the summer and into winter, planting wildflowers might seem like a waste of time. What if Ma and Pa Ingalls (you know, from Little House on the Prairie!) spent all spring and summer cultivating a beautiful flower garden. I mean they watered them twice a day, fertilized the soil, pulled all the weeds, and kept all the rabbits away. They would have a very attractive garden, but would it feed them in the winter? Would it provide what they needed for their root cellar and ice box?
Nope. In fact, that would be a pretty foolish thing to do. We could say they didn’t have their priorities straight.
When it comes down to it, a lot of things that I prioritize in my life are, well,
And that was when I remembered I Thessalonians 1:9.
…ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God…
The false gods these people once served were always dead. It’s not like they lived for a time and then died. Nope, they never even drew a breath.
In complete contrast, the full-of-truth living God they turned to has always been alive! Never was He ever born, and never will He die.
He always was, always is, and always will be.
They went from serving fake, always-dead gods to serving the true, always-alive God. What an awesome transformation!
From empty to full, from worthless to eternally valuable. My heart immediately filled with questions.
Are my main priorities worthless? What empty things am I pursuing? And then the Holy Spirit brought one specific thing to my attention.
Ever hear that given as a reason to start your own business or join this team or that one? There are so many awesome moms crushing it out there at being great multi-level marketers, and by no means am I suggesting that working towards financial freedom is a bad thing. As far as priorities go, financial freedom is a pretty good one.
It sure does look pretty, doesn’t it?
But I realized that, while watching all these women posting about how much money they’re making, the paid trips to paradise, the annual vacations, the extra money for this or that…I began to resent the financial place that God has placed us in. (Not a “bad” or “hard” place by any means! Just not rolling in the dough. 😉 )
My priorities shifted from pursuing Christ-like contentment and diligence to gaining financial freedom. Yes, we should do all we can do to work hard, save money, pay off debt, keep a budget, etc.
When becoming debt free or earning that big bonus or being able to take crazy awesome expensive vacations becomes too big of a deal, becomes one of my driving priorities, it has actually become an idol.
That’s right. One of those, false, always-dead things. Is it true that happiness comes from financial freedom?
It can be easy to let that become an idol, because it’s so well-disguised. It smells good, just like a wildflower. But I must guard my heart from the sneaky lie that “I’ll be happy when…”
When facing eternity, does financial freedom really REALLY matter?
God says that gold in Heaven is the equivalent of gravel. Should I be chasing so hard after something that is of so little importance to Him? God gives us the money we have and commands us to use it wisely. But when money becomes an idol in my heart, that’s the day I’ve been duped by the pretty, enticing, wildflower of happiness=financial freedom.
Please tell me I’m not the only one who struggles with this!
The truth is, Jesus gives me all I need for each day, in order to do the things He wants me to do. I need nothing more than what He has provided.
Instead of chafing against and complaining about the state of our finances, I can let God use those limitations, those payments, those pressures, to teach me to be diligent and wise. I can learn more of His ability to take care of me, and experience growth in my faith and trust in Him as I watch Him fulfill our needs.
I thought of a few more priorities for me to put in their rightful place: Getting into shape, having a pristine home, having “me time,” and getting my entire to-do list done.
These things aren’t bad. In fact, in their proper place, they are very good things, just like wildflowers.
I plan to enjoy my little basket garden. But I’m not going to expect it to fulfill my true needs.
Let’s invest in the two things on earth that will last forever: the souls of men, and the Word of God.
What are some “wildflower” areas of your life? Are there pretty, but basically worthless things you are prioritizing?