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The Main Thing

The Main Thing

I’m a list person. Maybe that’s because of my age, or maybe it’s because of the responsibilities that are mine, or maybe it’s just how I function. On one hand, I don’t want anything to slip through the cracks; on the other, at the end of the day I like to see what I’ve accomplished.

But lists have limitations, and here’s where I fail. I regularly put far more on a list than I can ever hope to accomplish, even if everything goes as planned without distractions, disruptions, or derailments. And to add to my failure, I often fail to include my top priorities on my list.

Are you a young parent? Does your list today include any of these?

  • Drive all or part of your family to school, practices, games, music lessons, and more
  • Plan nutritious meals, working to satisfy all of the taste buds and/or a variety of special dietary needs
  • Help with homework adapting to each of your children’s learning style
  • Keep up with washing, sorting, and folding your family’s laundry (OK, maybe not folding)
  • Tidy and/or clean your house . . . at least a little bit
  • Volunteer at your child’s school or assist in your church with your skills and gifts (maybe with skills someone else thinks or hopes you have)

Each of those (and many other things I didn’t list) is important, but each of those is not the MOST important today. If I could share one piece of advice in the If-I-Had-It-to-Do-Over Category, I’d tell you to find the most important need each day and focus on that. If you can get to a second or third item, three cheers for you. But don’t beat yourself up if you accomplish only that thing or even just a part of it. But don’t ignore the main thing.

Periodically take a fresh look at Mark 12:30-31 where you and I see our two most important priorities.

“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.”

The main thing? Love God and love your neighbor. The neighbors who live at your house (your spouse and your children) will benefit from your focus on the real main thing.

By: Nancy Lohr

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