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The Light Switch

17 Sep Spiritual Formation | Comments Off on The Light Switch
The Light Switch
 

Let me paint a picture for you. You are sitting in a room engulfed in a moment; maybe writing a letter, reading a book or studying for a sermon.  Perhaps you are talking with a friend or simply relaxing with a cup of coffee.  Then unexpectedly someone flips the light switch filling the room with a flood of light or darkness.  In either case, you are jolted alert to your surroundings and suddenly become aware of all the other things going on around you.

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It feels like someone flipped the switch for me here at Arrowhead recently. 

Three months of intense summer ministry are now just behind us.  Hundreds of people from campers and staff to volunteers and missions teams are no longer combing the landscape.  The quiet now is a stark contrast to that exhilarating commotion I had grown accustomed to since Memorial Day.  It is a transition that I have experienced 13 times and it always grabs my attention.

These moments and the new pace of life they bring offer a great opportunity to evaluate my priorities.  I remember it like it was yesterday.  I was in high school on a leadership retreat with our student ministry.  We were handed a sheet of paper with the word “Priorities” at the top and given a block of time to think and write.  The task was to list every activity from a typical day and add up the hours.  The goal was to reveal our priorities by charting the reality of our how we spent our time.

“Making a list, creating a chart, systematizing my daily routine.” These were things right up my alley (I know, a little odd for a 17 year old).  It did not take me long to fill the page will data.  The first thing I realized was my list added up to 27 hours.  Apparently, my time perception was a bit off.  I had to go back and separate fact from fiction.  After the dust settled I was amazed.  My priorities were not what I thought they were.  I remember staring wide eyed at my paper and thinking, “I have to get my priorities straight.  God is nowhere near the top of this list.”

Nowadays, I would say it a bit different.  My schedule does not have blocks of time, but instead has a rhythm.  I try not to start and stop compartmentalized activities.  I try not to think of my priorities as bullet points on a list. I would much rather walk with God, enjoying the process.  I want to be healthy in all areas, not just in the ones where the numbers add up.

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With the new school year underway I am sure your switch is now “on” and things are getting busy.  As you move through the next few months, I encourage you to check your priorities.

Make a Chart

It really is helpful to chart your daily activities and the time you give to each.  Hopefully your days are not longer than 24 hours.

Find Your Rhythm

Is your schedule the same as it was 3 months ago?  Are you busier?  Do you have any margin?  Chart a whole week or even a month and look for rhythm. Do your priorities flow through your day or week like an ongoing current instead of a momentary bullet point?

Get Healthy

Share your findings with your spouse, a friend, a coworker or your leaders.  Create a new chart that allows you to be healthy – before God, at home, at work and at rest.  Adjust your rhythms to re-prioritize your schedule.

Don’t Give Up

I still find that my hours sometimes add up to more than 24 in a day.  I tend to measure success by the numbers and even then my perception of how I spend my time is usually a bit off (or a lot, to be honest).  Don’t give up though.  What I thought mattered when I was 17 and what I think matter now make for two very different lists. Even now, I would say that my list of priorities has changed even since last year.

May God continue to transform us as our hearts are attuned to His priorities, and then may our schedules reflect what matters most. I know God will bless you as you seek Him more.  May Colossians 1:9-10 guide each of us as we think through our priorities this year:

“…We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God” Col 1:9-10 (NIV)

 

Ben Myers
Camp Director at Arrowhead Bible Camp
Ben Myers has served as the Camp Director at Arrowhead Bible Camp in Brackney, PA for the past 13 years. Arrowhead is a ministry committed to discipleship through its programs for adults with developmental disabilities, missions opportunities for youth groups, and mentoring of High School and College students. Ben also teaches as an adjunct professor at Lancaster Bible College and holds degrees from Cairn University and Baptist Bible Seminary.