It’s highly likely that the burn-out you and I experience—the frazzled nerves and frayed edges—are a result of taking on jobs God never intended for us to do. We are trying to be superwomen or supermen, thinking we can be all things to all people, and never saying, “It’s not my job.” In the midst of all those urgent voices, you may have shortchanged what is important: The word of God and prayer.
You cannot allow others—no matter how well-intentioned—to cause you to try to be what you’re not supposed to be. You may disappoint them—but if you’re going to be effective for God, you must avoid the tendency to try to be all things to all people.
This doesn’t mean you’ll live a life of ease with no pressures. I’m sure the hours will still be long, and exhaustion will still be a part of your life. But the more you submerge yourself into God’s Word, the less frantic you’ll be, the more you’ll know what God wants and doesn’t want you to do, and the more peaceful and calm you can be as you face your heavy schedule.
In his booklet, “The Tyranny of the Urgent,” Charles Hummel has a suggestion which I think is excellent. He suggests that in addition to our daily time of getting to know God, we set aside one hour a week for spiritual inventory—to evaluate what’s happened over the past week and plan for the week ahead. To make certain our To-Do List has the important things at the top.
To help you and me in that process, I’ve written a simple guideline to use for that spiritual inventory (click on link below to download). If you are serious about getting your priorities in line—spending serious time getting to know God, weeding out the unimportant things on your list of priorities, putting God’s Word and prayer at the top of your list—then you may find this guide for a weekly spiritual inventory helpful.
I wonder what would happen in our worlds if Christians considered important things a higher priority than urgent things. It could be a very exciting adventure! To that end, I hope many of you will consider using this weekly spiritual inventory. I believe it will be a great help in getting you out of crisis mode and into a more God-centered lifestyle.