Finding Time for the Important
Dwight Eisenhower said, “What is important is seldom urgent. And what is urgent is seldom important.”
Stephen Covey introduced us to the “Important/Urgent” matrix in his book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
The farther that most Christ-followers go, they more they find that their own spiritual growth and development falls into the “Important but not Urgent basket!” This can be especially true for leaders. Their identity starts to become enmeshed with their activity.
I often tell leaders… “What got you here (methods and practices), often will not be what (methods and practices) takes you there! Count on needing to re-calibrate how you get at your own development, and times with God, in route to finishing well.
Sacred Rhythm refers to the structures you follow in the cultivation of your ongoing life with God. Ruth Haley Barton in her book “Sacred Rhythms” asks: “How brightly burns the flame of desire for a love affair with God, other people, the world? Do we know that to desire and seek God is a choice that is always available to us?”
Sacred Rhythm involves the spiritual disciplines and activities that open us to the transforming work of God in our development. One monastic practice that many use today is the creation of a “Rule of Life.” A rule allows for daily, regular space to breath and enjoy God, often bringing new practices and variety to your spiritual disciplines.
What caught my eye with the idea of a RULE was the phrase; “regular space to breath and enjoy God.” For too long I have rebelled against structure, and I paid the price. Little or no space to breath and enjoy God. I am trying to find my way back to that, and the right rhythm and structures that work for me.
My QUESTION for all of us is this… Is there a sacred rhythm to your spiritual journey and enjoyment of God?
The EVERY STRATEGY is about creating regular space to breathe with God. It is not an example of a fully developed “Rule of Life,” but it can help an individual re-establish a more “sacred” rhythm.
For me it’s a simple… easy way to remember… what I need to set aside in my over-worked schedule. It has helped. It’s still a work in progress, It gives me a benchmark for cultivating space and genuine enjoyment of my life in Christ.
THE EVERY STRATEGY
EVERY DAY… SPACE in my day to day practice of the presence of God; time with God.
EVERY WEEK… SOLITUDE time and space with God; a weekly “appointment with myself” … a walk, a coffee, prayer, reading… time.
EVERY MONTH… SURRENDER to God; giving myself permission to be away; gathering myself back up and returning back to Him.
EVERY QUARTER… SEARCHING the heart of God; intentional re-alignment space; asking what’s right? wrong? missing? confused?
EVERY YEAR… SEEKING out what’s next; looking back (time-line) – looking forward… am I chasing God, or me?
It’s a simple template. I can tell when my rhythm is at work, or missing.
DOWNLOAD the Every Strategy. It may help you find the time already present in your da, that needs to be re-purposed. It includes additional “how-to” and other resources.
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© Terry Walling / 2013