How Do You Determine What Really Matters?

Would anyone dispute we ought to be doing only the things that matter? Would we disagree over taking care of the priorities?

The problem isn’t over doing the first things first; the problem is determining what should be first. Recently, I wrote a blog about Christmas concerning the things that matter. Click here to read the post.

Even the least engaged of us has much to do and not much time to do it. How do you determine what needs to be done?

First, ask God what matters to Him. Let God speak to you through His Word, through prayer, and through the circumstances to teach you what matters to Him. Get this part right and most of the rest of this post can go unread. Nothing matters as much as seeking God’s guidance. God spoke through the prophet Isaiah about those who go to Egypt for help and rely on horses and chariots and do not look to the Holy One of Israel or seek help from the Lord (Isaiah 31:1). God obviously gives guidance to those who seek Him.

Second, look at the consequences of your actions. Ask yourself and God where this will lead. Wood Kroll influenced me greatly when he counseled to “play the movie.” He meant to look down the road to see how the movie ends. Does it have a happy or sad ending? Looking at the consequences will help you decide what really matters.

Third, seek counsel from the wise and experienced around you. These will be people who have learned from God and learned from their own mistakes and the errors of others.

Fourth, determine how your decision fits in the scheme of your lifework and your obedience to God. We all have to say “no” to certain opportunities. Following this part of the exercise will help you know when to say “yes” and when to say “no.”

Finally, judge how this will affect your relationships. Our relationships matter and should be carefully considered

When I follow these steps, I find I am much better equipped to make important decisions.

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2 Responses

  1. Perhaps, the question could be asked, What matters when the rules change, friends have died and those you trusted in council are found to be untrustworthy? Interesting how isolated one may become in the midst of plenty. Interesting.


  2. Change that matters:

    Congratulations! If you are reading this you have survived the end of the world once more.

    It is interesting how we were challenged in our youth to change the world for the better and find our piers wishing things would be the way they were. I wonder about the selective memory of those piers. I even wonder about my own. The following is something like I heard 40 years ago when I entered my relationship with the United States Air Force and soon after became a member of the Arnold Air Society:

    Climate Change
”The environment inside our Air Force is changing. It’s been changing for the last 25 to 30 years, but it hasn’t changed enough and it hasn’t changed in all the right ways to ensure integration of all airmen. And so you and I are going to change it—immediately and definitively. We must ensure that every member of our Air Force is treated with respect and feels like a critically important part of the team.”
—Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh addressing more than 140 wing commanders from across the service at JB Andrews, Md., Nov. 28, 2012.

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