Recently, my youngest brother’s father-in-law passed away. Or my sister-in-law’s father passed away. Either way, it’s been a major and sudden impact on their family. I don’t want to know what the feeling of suddenly losing a parent is like. I have lost friends and loved ones in my life, and they are all different. Through offering help in any way possible, thinking on these recent events, and how they have affected my brother Pete and his wife Louise, has made me think. Today I was thinking, and writing a response e-mail to Louise who had thanked me for a couple of things, including this tribute, when it hit me. Priorities. Everyday priorities.
At the end of the day, at the end of all days really, there is God and family. When we think all is lost and we are at the end of our rope, there is God and family. True trust and faith in God in addition to help from family is what allows us to push ourselves beyond the thresholds we run past. God and family.
Many people might answer the question properly. The question being, what are your top three priorities? God, family, self, or job, or career, etc. But are they really a priority? Priority is more than saying so, it’s a guideline to how we actually do so. Or better yet, the actions we perform daily, weekly, and so on, those are really how our priorities are defined. Here is how reference books define the word priority.
greatest importance – the state of having most importance or urgency
somebody or something important – somebody or something that is ranked highly in terms of importance or urgency
right of precedence – the right to be ranked above others
Breaking down this word and its definitions it would seem that our actions would define the order more than anything else. When push comes to shove, how do we spend our time? How do we spend our conscious thought? If we behave in a manner of seeking God, talking to God, doing God’s will, and working each day to be the best example of God we can be, then chances are God is a top priority. If we decide that our time and energy is best spent on bettering our family, the people in our family, and helping them through every turn then we probably have made family one of our top priorities.
So when our life is turned upside down, or we have lost someone close and can’t wrap our minds around why, it’s probably God and family that we will count on to get us through. Better yet, this assistance will come naturally, automatically, and in greater amounts than we could ever imagine, as a result of having lived life with our priorities straight. And maybe sometimes the someone we lost had lived life with such strength in these priorities that the good, the just, the calm, the peace they lived in everyday, it overtakes us. It beckons us to follow in those large, imposing footprints that grow with each passing day. The footprints of those who came before us, or maybe even the footprints of the Lord Himself. Either way, these things happen for a reason and if your heart is pulling you, your conscience tugging at your every fiber to follow, to make a change for the better, then you may want to heed this urging.
Certainly our everyday priorities could make or break life before, during, and after the toughest times of our life. If our priorities during our toughest times are what get us through, imagine how enriching our lives could be if we conducted everyday in the same manner. It is something to consider. Something to be conscious of. Everyday priorities.