The other day I read another blog post addressed to women talking about priorities (it was a good post; read it here). In passing, on her way to make a different point, the writer mentioned the oft-repeated statement that if you're married, your priorities should/must be God first, then husband, then children.
That's been repeated so many times that it goes unchallenged and, truly, unexamined. But as I read it, I wondered:
Is it true?
Is it biblical?
Where does this “rule” come from?
And, more important, what does it mean in everyday life. How would we live those priorities?
Does it mean that if at a given moment our husband wants us and our kids want us, we always must respond to our husband's wants first?
Does it mean that we should spend more of our time doing things for/with our husbands than for/with our children?
Does it mean that if the house was on fire and we could only save one person, we should save our husband rather than our child? (Yes, I think about things like that.)
I guess it's human nature to try to rank things like this in a tidy order. We like to know the rules. We like to know where things stand. Maybe I'm missing the point, but to me, ranking people as priorities implies assigning relative importance — that is, deciding one is more important that the other. And that feels . . . wrong to me.
What do you think? Do you agree with the idea of assigning priority that way? It's a “rule” I've generally seen only in Christian teaching — do you know where the rule came from? That is, is there a Bible passage that establishes it, or is this just a rule we've come up with on our own? And what does it mean, really? How exactly, practically, would we reflect that priority in day-to-day life?