Thursday, August 19, 2010

day 215: more priority purging

I have already described a couple of the priority purges we have experienced in our lives. There have been several more of these over the years. I can't emphasize enough the importance of paying attention to the priority purging that might naturally happen in your life. These purges may very well be God's way of steering you in a certain direction in terms of your priorities.

Many years ago, when we had five children ten and under, Ray's plant shut down, and he was transferred to another plant in a city an hour away from our hometown. We had always lived in the same area as our parents, the community in which we were born and went to school. Moving with five young children to a community where we did not know anyone was overwhelming at first, but proved to be God's way of purging our priorities even further.

Our move took us away from the church we had been in since our early married years, away from our families, and away from our friends. However, God used it to help us focus on the most important priority we had: our children. We didn't know anyone in our new town. We didn't have a church. We didn't have extended family just up the road to go play games with or visit. We didn't have any outside activities. It was just us--our marriage, five young children, homeschooling, and Ray's job.

Talk about priority purging! This move forced us to bind together in our marriage and with our children more than ever. We were not distracted by outside friendships for us or the children--and our family unity, child training, and marriage were all strengthened as a result of it. We could have used this time to dig into even more busy-ness and activity or rush to find new friends, but because we took this as God's way of making us more strongly united, and we focused on the heart-training of our children rather than outside things, this priority purge became a turning point in our family's life. New friends and activities would come later, after the priority of strengthening our family was well underway.

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