There's an old saying, that the way we spend our time
shows what our priorities are. Last year, I was teaching a group of seventh grade students, and decided to have them do an exercise about priorities. I had them write down each and everything they did each day for an entire week. They had to keep a record of how they spent every minute of every day.
At the end of the week, they brought their time logs into class. I had them make several categories, such as "Time Spent in School", "Time Spent Eating", "Time Spent on My Computer", etc. Then, they had to add up how many hours they had spent on each of these categories that past week.
The last category I had them do was "Time Spent on anything to do with my faith". To a student in that classroom, they had spent less time on this category than on any other category. It was dead last on the list.
Now, before we judge these students, I wonder how many of us would have
the same results if we did this exercise? How many of us do more than just go to Church on Sunday? How many of us do something daily? How many of us truly make God more important than anything else in our lives?
In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus encountered a teacher of
the Jewish law, who wanted to know "which commandment in the law is the
greatest." (Matthew 22:36). In other words, what is the most important thing for a follower of God to be doing?
Jesus' response to the Jewish official is one of the most important
teachings Jesus delivers in all the Gospel: "You shall love the Lord, your God,
with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind."
The most important law for followers of God to follow, the most
important thing for us to be doing, is to be making God our NUMBER ONE
PRIORITY! To love God more than anything, to make God our number one priority!
If the way we spend our time shows what our priorites are, then we have
to spend time devoted to our faith. Now, does this mean that we should sit in Church all day, and not watch TV, play sport, etc. No, but it does mean that we need to make sure that God is a priority in our lives, by making sure that these other things do not become more important to us than our relationship with God.
As a young person today, you are undoubtedly very involved and very
busy, and that is truly GREAT. The danger lies in making these things more important to us in our lives than God. What is our number one priority? Who is our number one priority? Does the way we spend our time reflect that? What things are important to us in our lives?
I would challenged you to complete the activity I mentioned during this next week- maybe even just do it for a few days. Which categories do you devote the most time to? The least? Where does God fit? How much time does God get each week?
Jesus tells us that the most important thing for each of us to do is to love God with ALL our mind, heart, and soul....this is easier said than done. Its up to each of us to live our lives in a way that reflects how important God is to us.
Getting involved in Youth Ministry here at our Parish is a GREAT way to make God a priority in your life. There are other opportunities to be involved at our parish as well. Give God some extra time each week, make him a priority.
May God bless us all abundantly,