Seek Ye First

33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” ~ Matthew 6:33

Sometimes we get our priorities confused and lose sight of what is most important. Jesus was teaching on that very thing. He explains that seeking God is the most important, even more so than money and clothes. He said if we got it right, God would add all the other things we need. Admittedly, that is a hard teaching when you have hungry mouths to feed and little naked bodies to clothe. But the truth is, these things aren’t eternal, but your soul is eternal. Your soul will live somewhere forever. No one says on their dying bed, “Man, I wish I had a few more suits of clothes.” Or, “Man, I wish I had more money in the bank.” No, they don’t. At that time, those things aren’t as important as they seemed when we were experiencing the lack thereof and eternity seemed a long ways away.

I’ve experienced lack, and I’ve experienced plenty, and yes, plenty is much better by far. The world is so focused on instant gratification that we’ve lost sight of seeking God. We’re so caught up with keeping up with the Kardashians, the rich and famous, the rock stars, the rap stars, the movie stars, and the fallen stars that we have no place or time in our busy lives for seeking the Bright and Morning Star. Statistics tell us that the average Christian attend a church service twice a month. I wonder how many diligently and fervently attend the weekly TV service of their favorite show.

At the beginning of every year, my family and I observe a twenty-one day fast. We turn off our TV, our secular music, entertainment like video games, social media, secular books, etc.; we limit shopping only to emergencies, we cut out soft drinks, coffee, meats, processed foods, and other pleasures of life and come together to diligently seek God. Our children have been doing the fast with us from time they were very young. We always have a theme and a specific thing or two (bedside lost souls) that we fervently pray about.

Admittedly, a few years ago, I was a bit discouraged at work because things were not working out the way I had envisioned them to be. To my shame, I was so discouraged I was even considering not doing the fast that year, something I’ve never done since we started oh so many years ago. Nobody knew how I was feeling. Then I received a family group text from my youngest daughter (18 years old at the time) stating how excited she was about that year’s fast. How she believed that was the year for open doors. She felt like Genesis 32:25-28 should be our theme. It is where Jacob wrestles with God and doesn’t let go until he receives a blessing from God. She felt in her spirit we needed to press in and wrestle with God in prayer and not let go until we received our blessing.

Wow! Now, if that’s not a reason to get excited and want to shout about, I don’t know what is. It’s not everyday parents receive a text from their 18-year-old saying how excited they are about turning off electronics, TV, computer games, etc., and putting away Christmas presents and deny themselves in order to seek God. When they were small, we were told, “Those children are too young to fast.” But look at them now. We didn’t deny them food as children; we asked them to give up certain things: playing outside, TV, Gameboy, etc. We taught them the importance of seeking God. Train up a child in the way they should go, and when they are old, they will not turn away from it.

Let me encourage you for this New Year to seek more and covet less. Do not teach your children the pleasures of instant gratification, and it’ll pay off in the end. Set a time to diligently seek God as a family, and may your New Year bring you peace, joy, happiness, good health, a closer walk with Jesus, and prosperity, with all your children serving the LORD.

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your love and salvation that You’ve lavished upon us. Thank You for the privilege of being able to seek You. Help us to find You this year as we seek. Help us to hear from You, answer when we call. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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