Reforming procrastinators, I said I send my accountability partner my list of Big Rocks for the week. What did I mean?
I don’t know who originated the big rock illustration. It became well known years ago when demonstrated by a time management expert. He used a large jar in which he placed sand, then pebbles, then rocks. The first two took so much space that the rocks would not all fit in the jar. When he placed the rocks in first, followed by the pebbles, even the sand made it too.
The sand represents the many little things in life that take our attention – most emails, sweeping the porch, doctoring a scraped knee. The pebbles are more important items we feel we ought to do – call that friend, try a new recipe, write a note. The rocks represent the most important things, the true priorities – time with the Lord, earning a living, educating the children.
Of course we see problems with this. A scraped knee is critical to the hurting little one and his caring mom. In addition, some users of this illustration say that if you put the rocks in first, then everything will go in – plus water. “You can do it all and more.” This blog is NOT about doing more!
Though not perfect, the analogy helps me. I only focus on the big rock portion.
We all have a limited amount of time – the jar. We want the most important things to make it in there.
Without my deliberate decisions and action, anything can go in my jar. At the end of the day I find a jar full of sand and pebbles – and a pile of rocks on the outside.
Choosing or recognizing what qualifies as a big rock is key. Then actually doing that thing shows it really is a priority. Getting before the Lord in prayer is primary for selecting our big rocks. Seeking my husband’s counsel aids in selecting them.
Sometimes interruptions provide an unexpected big rock or dump of sand. We can trust God to be in control of that and seek Him on how to handle it. Blessings often come that way. But for the pattern of my life, I want to follow His direction deliberately and not default to whatever beckons.
So weekly, I determine my big rocks. Sometimes I get them all done, sometimes not. Without the decision and the effort, I would do very few. This way, by God’s grace, I enjoy the completion of many.
What are your big rocks this week?