Margins and Priorities

Andy Stanley talks about Margin in our lives.  Margin is that space between where we currently perform and the absolute limit of what we are capable of.

Too many of us live as if these two need to be the same.  We schedule and plan so that every moment in life is packed to the complete limit and there is no room for error.  We do it with:

1.  schedules

2.  finances

3.  relationships

4.  emotions

We are always running full out — with room to breathe and no place or room for anything to go wrong.

When margin shrinks too much several things happen:

1.  Stress levels go up — we are a society plagued by stress and worry

2.  We become self absorbed — the intrusion of “others” into our lives fouls up the plans we have.

3.  Relationships suffer– I don’t have time to write an email to my friend, to talk on the phone with them.  I don’t have the time to sit down over coffee and just enjoy the fellowship of anther human being. priorities

Lessons to be learned:

1.  Our days are numbered. 

Job 14:5 A person’s days are determined;(A)
    you have decreed the number of his months(
    and have set limits he cannot exceed.(

YOLO — You only live once.  What once in a life time opportunities are you missing because of your hurried life?   When my daughter was born I was working a job that had me on the road about 1,000 miles per week and away from home 2-4 nights a week.  As she began to grow I had to ask some hard questions about what was urgent and what was truly important.

Psalm 90:12   12 Teach us to number our days,(A)
    that we may gain a heart of wisdom

2.   Prioritize your life.

Important things first — but the important is not always urgent.  The deadline your boss gives you may be urgent, but is the time spent with your son at a baseball game more important in the long run?  

What things really are eternal?   Ask yourself what will it matter 20 years from now?

Packing the car for vacation…… what goes in first?  The necessary and truly important things.   Some things get left behind because we either don’t really need them — or we can buy them later if needed.

Do we have the margin in our life to do that important things in life? 

3.  Make time with God a priority

Matthew 6:33    Seek first the Kingdom of God (the important things) and all these other things (the urgent) will be added.

What things are truly important to you ?  four priorities


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