What really matters

What really matters is seldom the most immediate concern. For example…

If there is really a Creator who created us and to whom we will give an account someday, then what really matters is being prepared for that encounter. But I wonder what the ratio is between people who consult the bible for daily direction vs. those who consult the weather channel or weather app on their phone for advice on how to plan their day.

I suspect that the immediate concern for most people is the condition of the weather when it comes to planning their day.

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Nationally, (for the U.S.A.) what really matters is paying off the trillions of dollars of debt that is accumulating, but I suspect that what matters to most citizens is when will their next stimulus check arrive.

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Physically, what really matters for those who want to live a long and healthy life is eating a healthy diet, practicing a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise, and getting enough sleep. But if the sales numbers are any indication, what matters for most people on any given day is a good burger and fries.

Now I am not a cynic, I’m really not, but I am a realist. So here’s the punch line…

If you really hope to make a difference and you really hope to lead well, then address what matters to people first, before pointing them to what matters most.

Probably more than we’d like to admit, most of us are more focused on what matters to us far more than what matters most. A good leader understands this and takes it into account.

Often what matters to people most is personal things like being treated with respect. Being listened to, taken seriously, treated kindly. Most often what matters to people most is that their family is taken care of, that there is shelter over their head and food on their table.

They’re not bad people.

They know that there are millions of people who go to bed hungry every night, who do not have a decent shelter over their heads and who live in terror of their lives. They know there are major national and world issues that are far more important than their little world…they know that in their head, but their heart beats for home.

A wise leader and friend understands this and takes it into account.


The ONE THING for today: A good question to ask concerning every person you meet is, “What matters to them?” Address that need first and most will be willing to join you in taking on the really important stuff.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

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