The Tyranny of the Urgent
by Pastor Mike Pratt | June 17, 2016Tina and I recently stayed three days at a small retreat facility in the woods of New Hampshire. That time away made me realize how important it is that all of us make time to spend with God on a daily basis. Too often I relegate my “left over” time to God instead of being intentional about spending time in his Word and with him in prayer. Well, I knew this before, but it came crashing home again during our days in New Hampshire; I suffer terribly when I don’t spend intentional, planned time with God on a daily basis. I love reading the Word of God and am blessed each time I do. However, the time I have set aside each day to spend in God’s Word can easily be squeezed out by The Tyranny of the Urgent.
You’ve never heard of the “Tyranny of the Urgent?” Well, hang around with me for a couple of days and you’ll experience it firsthand. The Tyranny of the Urgent is the condition in which many of us live unfortunately. I am working hard at getting out from under this condition in my life. You can recognize The Tyranny of the Urgent in your life if you get to the end of a day and look back and think to yourself, “Man! I wish there were 30 hours in a day! Then I’d be able to get all the things done that I wasn’t able to get done in the last 24 hours.” Well, all of us realize that we would quickly fill even a 30 hour day just as full as our 24 hour ones are, huh? If you discover at the end of each day that there are numerous unfinished projects, emails, tasks, thoughts, that haunt you then you’re probably living much of your life in the Tyranny of the Urgent state.
I discovered this state in my life when I realized that I was having trouble finishing one project because another, more “urgent,” project just cropped up. Then, I didn’t finish that “urgent” project because another, more “urgent,” project popped up. Does this sound familiar? Well, it’s not a pleasant place or condition in which to live. But, there’s a place that is much more comfortable in which to live. And that place would be right where God wants you to live. Tomorrow, instead of jumping from one unfinished project to the next, try this: Start your day by asking God to guide you through the day. Then, ask God what you should do first. Get started on, and finish that project before moving on to the next one. Even if something more “urgent” pops up. You may have to tell someone to wait or you might have to tell someone that you just can’t do that “urgent” thing that they are demanding you do. I venture to guess that the world won’t stop revolving if you “refuse” to be ruled by the Tyranny of the Urgent. Try it, you’ll love the freedom it gives you!