by Neil Anderson
A HIGHER PRIORITY
For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God
Two significant events in my life brought into clear focus the priority of relationship over achievement. Before being called into the ministry, I worked as an aerospace engineer on the Apollo program. I will never forget the day the lunar lander touched down on the moon. This bold headline dominated the front page of the Minneapolis Star : "Neil Armstrong Lands on the Moon." It was an achievement I was proud to be part of.
But the really big news came months earlier on page 7 in the third section: "Heidi Jo Anderson, born to Mr. and Mrs. Neil Anderson, Northwestern Hospital, March 12, 1969." That may not sound like big news to you, but it was to her mother and me. Heidi totally took over my den and captured an entire shelf in the refrigerator. She altered our sleeping pattern and restricted our social calendar. But she was ours to hold, to hug and to care for.
What does God care about moon shots? They are deeds to be outdone. Somebody will always come along and do it better, faster and higher. What God cares about is little people like Heidi Jo Anderson because they will be with Him forever.
The second significant event in my life was receiving my first doctoral degree. But it turned out to be one of the most anticlimactic days of my life. I heard no applause from heaven, and I don't believe my achievement added so much as an asterisk to my name in the Lamb's Book of Life. I was a child of God before that day and I was still a child of God afterward.
But what happens in heaven when one sinner repents? Applause! Why? Because a relationship with God is eternal, while earthly achievements last only for time. Have you sacrificed the eternal to gain the temporal? Have you ignored personal and spiritual relationships in your pursuit of human achievements? Relationships must always have a higher priority than temporal achievements.
Lord, amidst the busyness of my schedule and clutter of my possessions, help me cherish and nurture my relationships today.
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