Seek Him first- seek first His Kingdom- it is a habit, a changing of our heart- an intentional effort to seek God first in all things.
Yesterday we had a busy day. I am sure you can relate- those days when you move from thing to thing at a pace that makes it easy to never stop and consciously invite God in.
I got to the end of the day, pulled out my journal and wrote-I have not talked to you or prayed to you since this morning- please forgive me.
I want to change my habits. I want to move my priorities- where I “will” myself to stop and invite God into all I am doing- not just on days when I am not busy, or just on days when I really need Him- but every day.
In Matthew 6, Jesus is teaching about several things- starting in verse 25 he discusses worrying- he says in verses 33-34:
33 But seek first his (God’s) kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
(If you have time, read all of Matthew 6- these verse are so much richer in the context of the whole chapter.)
Jeremiah 29 is a letter to God’s people who had been taken from Jerusalem to Babylon (they were exiled)- hear what He tells them through His prophet:
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”
What are you seeking first? The temptation can be great after a rough day to retreat into a cocoon of comfort- whatever that might be (TV, books, food, alcohol).
Not that these things are necessarily sinful- what I am suggesting- and what I have found to be true in my own life- is that sometimes I use these things- I run to them- instead of running into God’s arms.
It is a conscious effort- a changing of my heart- a willingness to expose my sins before the Lord- and even at times admitting my reluctance to go to Him instead of escaping into the familiar.
But I keep finding when I say no to those things and say Yes to God- oh the blessings that are mine. How He blesses me and my family through my desire to seek Him more- to open myself up to His presence- to invite Him into my life.
To ask Him to fulfill my needs- to satisfy my longings- to bring peace and comfort. He gives good gifts.
We are in a battle- God is battling for our affections against sin and pleasure- the temptations of our flesh. I pray that you will seek discernment from the Lord on what things in your life may be coming between you and God- that you would step out in faith to let go of those things. To embrace God instead.
I am not free of the temptation to sin- there are still days when I seek escape from my troubles- but I am trying- I am opening myself up to Him- asking Him to come in and change me. He wants a willing spirit in us- one that is honest in success and failure. He loves us.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
Once we have accepted the gift of salvation- we are saved from all of our sins, past, present, and future.
Do not let Satan lie to you- not by works- we will all sin in this life. But by God’s grace we can choose not to sin- and follow that desire placed in our hearts by salvation to know God and love Him- to respond in love and obedience to the gift He has lavished upon us.
May we seek Him first.