What is it that you want the most? What are the strongest desires of your heart that keep you pushing forward each day? If pursuing the kingdom of God and His righteousness isn’t on the top of our list, then it might be time to reconsider our priorities—especially if we carry His name as “Christians.”
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6:33
Putting the Lord first in all areas of our life doesn’t always come naturally. In-fact, it’s a desire that God has to place in us Himself. Take myself as an example. Though I believed in Jesus my whole life, until a few years ago, reading the bible was a chore. I couldn’t hardly get through a single chapter without falling asleep. If I felt overwhelmed by life, I might pray every now and then. But, more often than not, my vices were alcohol, marijuana, dark music, and wallowing in my misery. What did I care about? Money, social status, being loved more than I worried about loving as I should, being “knowledgeable” in things that I later learned did not matter one bit – things of that nature.
I did not worry myself over being righteous. Everyone sins, right? There is no reason to worry about sin – unless the sin of someone else affects me – then I’d get all worked up about it. I was a pretty good person. My selfish, addicted, lust-filled, money-hungry, and lying self.
Why do I write these things? For one, I think we should keep in mind that pursing the things of God like reading the bible or trying to live right is not something we can “just do.” I see all the time Christians who give others a hard time because they don’t “just stop sinning” or “accept Jesus” or “read their bibles.” Unless God places a zeal for Him and His truth in us, anything we attempt in that regard will be forced and without any real desire. Forcing these things on people often does more harm than good.
And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father. – John 6:65
Another reason I tell this story is because I’m living proof that the Lord rewards those who “diligently seek him.” Sometimes I get upset because of a sin I continue to struggle with, but when I look back at who I was 3 or so years ago, I hardly recognize myself. Once the Lord called me out of this world and towards Him, He placed a desire in me that one-upped anything else in my life. There were times, plenty of times, when other cares took first seat over the last few years, but He’d always pull me back in and set my priorities straight.
If you have a desire to know Jesus Christ, He will do the same for you. He will take many things you think you love and turn it upside down, and though that process can be hard at times, you will be so thankful for it. As you seek Him more and you learn more of Him and see Him changing your heart, your entire focus and perspective on life, love, and the world in general could be radically changed for the better. It is a wonderful journey, even if it can be hard at times.
When the hard times come, keep seeking Him. Seeking the kingdom is a process and is one often wrought in tribulation, but He puts us through these things and He will make a way out. If you go through times when you feel your faith is barely hanging on, but you keep going, count it as a blessing because guess what? Your faith was just made that much stronger. All things really do come together for our good when we place our trust in Him and seek Him with all our might.
One theme I see reoccurring in Kindling Truth is this idea that we should keep our focus on Jesus, or in other words, we should “diligently seek Him.”
But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. – Hebrews 11:6
- When we want to know the truth and find peace in a world of confusion, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want to be filled with His Holy Spirit so that we have communion with the Lord and greater confidence of salvation, along with the means by which sin is removed, we diligently ask Him.
- When we find ourselves struggling with sin or some other trouble, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want to be kept from following false teachers, prophets, and preachers, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want to see others we love come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want to be free from vanities, self-delusion, hypocrisy, and other sins that are often more illusive, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want to be good and faithful servants living at peace and faith within a wicked and perverse generation, we diligently seek Him.
- When we feel our faith isn’t as strong as it could be, we diligently seek Him.
- When we want more of His Spirit poured into our hearts so that we can be more effective for the kingdom of God, we diligently seek Him.
Many things in the Christian walk can be summed up with the idea of seeking the Lord with everything we have – a desire that can only be given to us by God Himself.