The first time management alarm is purpose. If we don’t know our purpose, we won’t know what is important. We will just spin our wheels.
Jesus is our best example from scripture. He knew His purpose. In Luke 4 the crowd tried to keep Jesus from leaving but He responded that He needed to preach to the other cities also because that was His purpose. In John 12 Jesus predicted His death and stated that for this purpose He came. Throughout scripture there are references to God’s purpose including Romans 8:28, Ephesians 3:11, 2 Timothy 1:9, and 1 John 3:8.
How does our purpose fit into God’s purpose? Ephesians 2:10 says we are God’s workmanship created for good works that God prepared for us to do. And in 1 Corinthians 15:58 we are told that our labor is not in vain. Part of knowing our purpose is discovering how God has gifted us.
When I was younger I thought perhaps my gifting was service. I love to throw a party, help with dinners at church, plan social functions, and the like. A few years ago I took a course on individual giftedness that helped me look harder at how God has gifted me throughout my life. With the help of others, I realized my gift is in administration. What I enjoy about throwing parties and helping others with social functions is the planning and organizing and preparing. It’s not that I don’t like helping, but my true gift is in planning. Even my full time job is in the details of administration, and I love my job. We must each seek out God’s individual purpose for our life and how that fits into His greater purpose.
Part of finding our purpose is our motivation. Again, Jesus is our example. He had the right motivation. He said in John 8:29 “I always do those things that please Him.” Scripture give us guidelines for motivation. Our motivation should not be selfish ambition (Philippians 2:3). We are to work for the Lord and not men (Colossians 3:23). We each have a unique design and respond to different motivations, but our primary motivation should be to please and glorify God.
A great summary of our purpose and motivation is found in 1 Peter 4:10-11, “As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God . . . with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ.” We use the gifts and abilities God has given us so God may be glorified. We find our purpose in His plan with the motivation of glorifying God through Jesus Christ.
God cares about our time and wants to walk through our days with us. Once we determine our purpose and motivation, then we are able to walk with God as He asked. We are to walk in love, walk in wisdom, walk as children of light, walk carefully, redeeming the time, and understanding what the will of the Lord is. How we walk is how we spend our time. God’s time management is to walk 24/7 with Him.
As we search the scriptures and seek God’s individual purpose for our lives, only then can we know our priorities. And we can’t prioritize without a priority.
Our next alarm will be Flexing our Plans.