This past Sunday I used the priority jar illustration as part of the sermon. You’ve probably seen it before. I pulled out a large jar and set it on a table in front of everyone. I poured a cup of small gravel into the a large jar. Then a cup full of medium size rocks. Finally I placed three larger rocks in the jar. And the lid on the jar wouldn’t shut. So I took out the large rocks, removed the medium size rocks and poured out the small gravel. I started over but this time I put the larger rocks in first followed by the medium size rocks and then poured the gravel into the jar. And guess what? The lid shut.
Of course, this illustrates priorities in our lives with the time we are given. The larger rocks are the truly important things such as faith and family. If all else was lost and only the larger rocks remained, your life would still be meaningful. The medium sized rocks are the other things in your life that matter such as work or school. And the pebbles signify the small stuff such as material possessions.
If we put the small pebbles in the jar first, there is no room for larger rocks. If we spend all our time and energy on the small stuff, we will never have room for the things that are truly important. But if we start with the larger rocks, there is room for everything. The challenge is to determine the big rocks in your life.
Jesus said it this way:
So above all, constantly chase after the realm of God’s kingdom and the righteousness that proceeds from him. Then all these less important things will be given to you abundantly. Matthew 6:33 (The Passion Translation)
Funny thing happened Sunday. Between each of the services I moved the jar and the rocks into the green room to get re-organized and ready to show the illustration again in the next service. During one of the services, as I was setting up the illustration, I realized I had accidentally left the large rocks lying in the green room. Illustration complete!
P.S. I hope you are joining us in our 21 DAYS OF PRAYER AND FASTING. If not, it’s not too late. Fast from food, social media, TV, etc. and pray each day at 6:33 AM and/or PM (Matthew 6:33).