Life seems to be crammed with priorities. They come and go. They change with the seasons. Some tasks dominate life for weeks and then grow to insignificance days later. Relationships crop up, they fade away. Jobs consume us, they fall to the background. What once was our constant worry is now a pea in the back of the brain. I recently found myself in quite a different mindset with a list of different priorities than I had had previously in life. I got married! Big change there. As many of you already know, marriage brings its own suitcase of blessings, priorities, and changes. The relationship you have been pursuing while dating is now brought into a whole new light. You are now living with this person, starting a life with this person, and sharing everything with this person. It’s actually a beautiful, crazy, and scary thing all wrapped up with a beautiful bow of love.
Obviously getting married caused many of my priorities to shift. Suddenly I had a husband to love, care for, and tend to.
Emotionally, my priorities shifted. He became the person I was to share everything with. Physically, my priorities shifted. The boundaries we had been confined to in dating no longer applied to our relationship.
Mentally, my priorities shifted. He dominated my thoughts. He became what I planned my daily activities around. He became my main focus.
Spiritually everything shifted. Within only a few weeks of my new marriage, I realized how differently I thought about God. In one aspect, I saw God in a new light because I saw how Christ designed marriage to funcion, but in another aspect I realized I didn’t really think about God…at all.
Instead of my normal morning routing of reading the Bible and praying, I was neglecting that to spend that time with Samuel before work. And then even when I did actually read my Bible and pray, my mind wasn’t focused on either the Scriptures or on who and/or what I needed to pray about. Instead, I was thinking about something I wanted to cook for Samuel, or something I needed to pick up at the store, or something Samuel had said. Even when we did our joint reading of the scriptures and prayer together, I found that my mind would wander while he was reading. At first, I didn’t feel guilty because I kept thinking to myself that I am called by God to be a good wife. I am called by God to serve my husband, love my husband, tend to my husband, so really there should be nothing wrong with me focusing so much of my attention on my husband.
EXCEPT Samuel isn’t God. Nor should Samuel be a god in my life. He is my husband, but that comes after God. God is always to be the first priority in all circumstances in life. Whether it be a job, a marriage, a baby, a house, a life crisis, a school decision – whatever – God is to always, always come first. I could easily use getting married as an excuse, but really there are NO excuses when it comes to God. God is not something we should ever think we can put on the shelf and just pick up when we need Him. No, He is meant to be the reason we get up in the morning. Our life is meant to be lived on a mission for Him. He is our creator, and He deserves nothing less than our life. He sacrificed his own son Jesus Christ’s life, so that we could have everlasting life. He is to be first and foremost our number one priority. We are to pattern our life around Him and for Him.
In His Word, the Lord promises that if you seek Him, you will find Him. When I realized that I was not prioritizing my focus, I began praying and asking God to renew my heart for him. I didn’t want to lose Christ as my first love just because there was the physical love of my husband in front of me. But here’s the beautiful thing: by prioritizing my relationship with Christ, I can actually be a better wife to Samuel than I ever could by neglecting my relationship with Christ. When Christ comes first, I can love more. I can be kinder, gentler, patient, and practice more self-control. With Christ as my focus, I can better serve my husband than I ever could by neglecting Christ for him.
I am still learning how to put this into practice. Through it all, I am learning one major lesson: regardless of the type of season I am experiencing, Christ should be the priority of the season.