Church, we have a problem! We are experiencing a crisis of epic proportions, and it centers around our values. Do we know what is important to us and prioritize those needs in our daily lives? I cringe when I log into social media and see a leader, obviously worn, do another event. I hurt when I hear leaders say the magnitude of work they have to do, while they continue to take on additional responsibilities they don’t have time for. My heart breaks when leaders, driven on getting to the next step, neglect relationships in the name of Jesus. Our need to prove our value shows up in our ministerial, corporate, and personal relationships. We have adapted to a workaholic culture where stress is celebrated, and rest or personal boundaries is shunned.
God didn’t create us to be robotic. Going through the motions of “life,” but not living. Doing, but never moving forward purposefully. Exhausted, but too afraid to take a nap. Healthy values are essential to God, and it’s imperative we have this difficult, but invaluable conversation. We can be productive and still nurture ourselves and others in a God-pleasing manner.
Last week, we discussed what your values (or your “why”) shouldn’t be determined by.
It shouldn’t be prioritized by “feelings” and needing other people to validate you.
It shouldn’t be based on proving a point and working to prove it.
It shouldn’t be made to save or rescue others while you suffocate under pressure.
The critical ingredient many of us are missing to developing healthy “whys” are values.
If I asked you to list your values what would you mention?
Here are a few of the things that I value and why I value them. They are not in any particular order.
I thrive in environments where I can collect my thoughts. I need frequent moments throughout the day to reflect to help me to think more clearly.
I value time with my family to enjoy life. I prioritize my family over ministerial or career endeavors. I only get one family.
Anything that doesn’t give me peace whether ministerial, career or otherwise must be avoided. I cannot place my mental and emotional health in jeopardy by attempting to be “all things to all people.”
When you take time to consider your values, then you have the responsibility to ask how what you are doing works within your value parameters. If something doesn’t work with your values, then it is something you should say “no” to.
Here is an example:
I prioritize my family. I value spending time with them and enjoying quality time with them without interruptions. If someone asks me to take a commitment during a time that I’ve dedicated to “family time” I can’t go against my values, so I must graciously decline.
It seems simple enough, but it can be challenging to implement.
What happens if someone gets offended when you say “no.”
What happens if they say, “…you used to…”
What happens if someone tries to tell you what you have time for?
You return to the values that you have without apology. You remember that God has values as well. On the seventh day, He rested. If our Creator, saw the significance in Sabbath rest, we should also.
You matter to God. You also matter to others. Taking the time to reassess your values and adjusting your life to complement healthier values is a good thing. Sure it is uncomfortable telling someone no. I know it’s challenging to look at your values and make the adjustments needed to have a healthier life. I understand how hard it is to be mindful of how you spend your time. It is necessary, and God wants us to realize that our values matter. How will you develop healthier values this week?
Questions to Ponder:
What are your values?
Are you honoring your boundaries and needs? Why or why not?
What is one way you can adjust your life to reflect your healthy values?