“All the king’s officials and even the people in the provinces know that anyone who appears before the king in his inner court without being invited is doomed to die unless the king holds out his gold scepter.” Esther4:11 (NLT)
The Persian king Xerxes (or Ahasuerus depending on your translation) was a world ruler and likely the busiest men in his day. That coupled with his infatuation with his own sense of self importance apparently drove him to becoming a time management freak.
His ruthlessness in managing his priorities, to the point of killing anyone who dared to interrupt him, was known throughout the realm. Anyone wanting to do business with him or even any family member wanting to spend time with him risked their very lives in taking initiative to see him.
Imagine the fear of having to deal with, or worse yet having to live, with someone so task oriented and self-protective of his time? Watch out, if the old man is preoccupied, feeling overloaded or in a grumpy mood he could lop off your head for bothering him!
We would all be quick to agree that this is time management run amuck. It is a caricature of how detrimental it is when task management becomes exclusive of relationship management.
Wise time management is first and foremost relationship management.
The book of Esther, documenting the salvation of the Jews through the efforts of Mordecai and Queen Esther, is a great study in the priority of relationship management.