Seeking Him First Day 5 – Giving God Our First
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21, ESV)
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37, ESV)
The exhortation from this whole study comes down to the three title words: Seek Him first. This means we are not our own top priority; our kids aren’t, our spouse isn’t, and our family and friends aren’t either. Simply put, we need to re-order our behavior and our mind to consider Him first in everything. This won’t just happen for us naturally when we are saved; it will take daily intentional practice.
What are some practical ways we can help set this habit in place? How can we store up treasures in heaven? And how can we love the Lord with our whole heart, soul and mind? I wish I were an expert on this topic, but I’m a work in progress, just like you; I’m also in need of more practice. I’m learning how challenging it can be to put Him first, not just in word, but in my thoughts and actions.
The best place we can start is in our thought process. Assuming first that we are in daily communication with God and reading His Word regularly, we can filter our thoughts through what we know Scripture teaches us. Does what I’m doing, or wish to do, fall in line with the Word of God? If I’m not sure, praying about it and asking other fellow believers for advice are two resources that may help me come to a godly conclusion. I know it’s tempting to assume that if there isn’t a clear answer then it’s open game. Most often, there may not be a black-and-white answer, but there are general principles we can use that help us make decisions that honor Him best.
Once we adopt the habit of considering Him first in our hearts, our actions should follow. It is always challenging when we think of this popular slogan, “What would Jesus do?” I know that in my case my own actions often look a lot different than His would. Our actions are an outpouring of the state of our hearts, and so what is inside us will be revealed in our behavior. If we surrender our thoughts to Him, our actions will support that. A great question to ask ourselves is whether our actions are bringing honor to the Lord or if they are harming our testimony. When we give an honest answer to this question, it will help us honor Him with our lives.
I think it’s an amazing privilege that God wants to be an intimate part of every facet of our lives. The blessings we enjoy are because He has been gracious and good to us. The peace we have from knowing our sins are forgiven is a gift beyond measure. He craves our company and longs to hear from us. Just as we light up when we spend time with our own children, how much more does our heavenly Father find joy in our willingness to draw close to Him! When we consider all that He’s done for us, how can we deny Him the first part of our hearts, minds and bodies? Seeking Him first isn’t an obligation; it’s a tremendous privilege. May we be challenged as we look at our own hearts and give Him what is due Him—our lives.