What are priorities? Where have they gone? Are they still important? Can they change your life? What effect do they have on you and others if you fail to keep them?

When you pause and give serious thought to the word “priority,” you will conclude it plays a very vital part in your life and in the lives of others.

“Thank God every morning when you get up that you have something to do that day which must be done, whether you like it or not. Being forced to work and forced to do your best will breed in you temperance and self-control, diligence and strength of will, cheerfulness and content, and a hundred virtues which the idle never know.”

— Charles Kingsley

My father taught me early in my life to live by the rule, “put first things, first” and “if it’s broke, fix it; if it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”

These are the priorities that at one time seemed to have been more important than they are today.

For example, “Look both ways before crossing the street.” If that is a priority in your life, you have much less chance of getting hit with an automobile. That being the case, you will probably live longer, with less pain and agony.

If you make being on time a priority, you won’t miss anything, and you will feel better about yourself. Why? Because you know you have done the right thing.

A stop sign means “stop” not “slow down.” Keeping the law must be a priority in our lives, or we will have to pay an unpleasant consequence.

Keeping your priorities makes for a healthier life, a safer life and a much more satisfying and happier life. Keeping our priorities where they need to be makes all of us much better witnesses to others.

“Fear God and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.”

— Ecclesiastes 12:13

Let us be responsible, and in so doing, keep our priorities straight.

“Ability involves responsibility.” — Alexander MacLaren



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George A. Hazlett is a retired minister in the Church of the Nazarene. He has written the weekly column, Think About it!, published weekly in Farm and Dairy for almost 28 years. He and his wife, Myrna, live in Hartville, Ohio.



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