Perhaps when this blog popped into your view today you thought you might pass it by because you thought, “This has nothing to do with me or my life,” or because you knew it would convict you of something you know is true about yourself. Either way, here we are, together again and looking at another issue so many of us face: Being all things to all people.

I’ll confess, I really don’t like limitations. I want to have enough energy to do it all. What about you? Are there times when you overextend yourself and try to do too much? There have been many, many times I have overextended myself and taken on too much responsibility. I have had to learn to say no to things I consider worthwhile and important because I already have commitments to other people. I wasn’t always this way, though.

There were decades of my life that I was intent on pleasing people and gaining their positive opinion of me. The consequence of that was a very unhappy husband and miserable children. I wasn’t much good to anyone. I had heart palpitations, indigestion, headaches, body aches, and a host of crummy attitudes to go along with all that. My priorities were right. I still placed my husband and children first, but I was under so much stress that I think they were glad when I was gone! I was angry, impatient, and often unkind to them because I was so busy “serving God” with a great attitude —everywhere but home.

So, let me ask you, what are your priorities? Are you sure they are God’s priorities for your life? What I know is that God’s priority for me is to love, honor and serve Him first by obeying His Word. That is a non-negotiable. Then I am to be a good and loving wife to my husband. He ranks right under God. Spending time with him is my next and most important ministry. This is easy because I love him deeply and we have a wonderful relationship. This translates into how much I jealously guard our time off. It is very rare indeed for me to consent to anything on a weekend because that is our time together. Thankfully, much of the ministry work can be done together and often is. After my husband, I am a mother and grandma to my (grown and married) kids and my only precious granddaughter. When these priorities are overshadowed by ministry service, there is a problem.

I try to be honest with myself and frequently evaluate my priorities. What about you? Are there things you should change? If so, what? And what must you do to make those changes? Most recently, I have had to be very careful to balance ministry, finishing school (for now), and being a wife. My husband was exceptionally patient and kind as things around the house slipped a little with the final push to finish my Masters in Biblical Counseling. We are both glad that little hurdle has been crossed, and things are running much smoother at home.

I have learned to listen to him. Despite my crazy drive to accomplish things, when he expresses concern about how hard I am driving myself, I consider his counsel and follow his leadership as my loving leader in our marriage. There are times I can’t see my sin as well as he can see what’s going on with me, so I listen and do a heart check whenever he brings something up.

Over-extending is not godly. It brings sinfulness into your life. I hope you will find these to be wise words, ladies. If you are not married, you still need someone in your inner circle who has the freedom to speak boldly and truthfully to you. It is an aspect of the one-another ministry we have to each other.

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