In Mark 1:35-37, right after Jesus slipped away to rest and reconnect with His heavenly Father, His leadership team tracked Him down and expressed with apparent disgust, “Everyone is looking for you” (verse 37). Or as it might sound to you, “Boss, the people are lining up, the phones are lighting up, and the inbox is piling up with emails from hurting people wanting your touch. Let’s hurry up and get back to work.” But Jesus took another approach, refusing to let other people set His agenda. He walked away from the people who were pursuing Him. He calmly redirected the team, “Let us go somewhere else…that I may preach there also; for that is what I came for” (Mark 1:38).
Jesus’ mission took priority, even over the real needs of some real people who really wanted His touch.
So what are your main things? Your main things are activities that are mission-critical, top priority, and grow out of your unique abilities. If you are unsure what your main things are, consider reading chapter 6 of How to Lead and Still Have a Life (or stay tuned for a future blog post on the subject).
Once you are clear on your main thing, set aside your best, most productive time of the day or week to carry out those vital tasks. Apart from an occasional crisis, there really is no excuse for pushing your main things to the back burner.
For me, my number one main thing is my weekly teaching of the Scriptures. It is a core value of our church and mission critical to all we do. So I tenaciously guard most of my Monday, Wednesday morning and Thursday morning for prayer, study and prep time. I normally study at home, free of office distractions, in order to focus solely on this one vital task. Time with my leadership team and staff is my second priority. So regular weekly and monthly meetings are also scheduled and protected.
Knowing that these large blocks of time are protected from distractions allows me to be more productive during the rest of my week. I don’t become stressed out on Tuesday, when I’m busy with staff meetings and administrative demands, because I know that on Wednesday and Thursday, I’ll have my results time.
What is the biggest intruder of your results time?