A group of friends went deer hunting and paired off in twos for the day. That night, one of the hunters returned alone, staggering under an eight-point buck.
“Where’s Harry?” he was asked.
“Harry had a stroke of some kind. He’s a couple of miles back up the trail.”
“You left Harry lying there, and carried the deer back?”
“Well,” said the hunter, “I figured no one was going to steal Harry.”
Funny as the story sounds, I believe it is instructive on how living purposefully demands a strict adherence to priorities. Time is a limited resource God has given us to do purpose and if we are serious about making an impact with our lives, understanding time and setting priorities are skills we must learn.
To succeed in our pursuit of purpose, we must learn to do what is called “planned neglect.” We must know how to deliberately ignore the pursuit of things, people and goals that do not profit our life assignments.
Undoubtedly, every area of your lives must be prioritized. But for the sake of ink and space, I will share with you three areas of your life in which you must learn to get your priorities right.
1. Prioritize your relationships
Doing purpose is a people business. Nothing should be more important to you than your relationship with people around you. You must however, learn to prioritize how much time, energy and efforts to put into your relationships. Know which relationships are most important and pay attention to them accordingly. Typically, your relationship with God should top your list while your family, mentors, colleagues and others follow. Pay attention also to relationships that help you grow and deliberately run from those that trivialize your vision.
2. Priotize your finances
A rich young man came to Jesus wanting to know what he must do to have eternal life and the Lord asked him to go sell all that he had and he walked dejectedly away. Perhaps it is true then that financial advisors can look at your bank statement and know where your priorities lie. To effectively do purpose, you must pay attention to how you manage your finances. You cannot enjoy your pursuit of purpose if you have spent all you had without preparation for the rainy days. You must give priority to how much you save, give and use to develop yourself while every other expenditure follow behind.
3. Prioritize your ideas
The world is ruled by ideas. Every great movement, invention or success in history started with an idea. In fact, the pursuit of purpose is a business of ideas. But no matter how great your ideas are, you cannot pursue them all. One, your don’t have all the tme. Two, you probably dont have all the resources. Thus, you must know those to share with others and those to personally embark on. If you have an idea of a book that really does not fall in the line of your ministry, it may be absolutely harmless to pass it on to someone else. Wisdom is profitable to direct!
Dwight Eisenhower once remarked that taking first things first often reduces the most complex human problem to a manageable proportion. You may not be all you want to be, but by prioritising for impact, you can increase your productivity and be all you were created to be!
I call you blessed!