April 24, 2020
Are You Seeking God's Kingdom First?
By Skip Heitzig
When you are consumed with worry as a child of God, it sends a message to the world that there's no real difference between a believer and an unbeliever. Imagine trying to witness to an unbeliever who knows that you're full of fear and anxiety in your everyday life. They would look at you and say, "Why should I give my life to Christ?"
Let me ask you this: Do you face life—especially dark times—like a Christian or like an unbeliever? Do your beliefs really affect the way you live? In Matthew 6:33, Jesus said, "Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you." The principle here is that God's provision is proportional to your vertical focus.
Notice the phrase "Seek first"—not second, not third, but first, as a matter of priority. Not after things in the world settle down again and you can find a job or finish school, and if you have any time left over, then you can squeeze something in for God. Seek first, as a priority in your life, the kingdom of God.
And "all these things shall be added to you." What things? All the things Jesus had previously spoken about in this passage: food, clothing—everything you're not to worry about. In other words, Jesus was saying, "If you focus on just one thing, I'll take care of all these things. Rather than worrying about your life, just start working for My kingdom, and I'll give you everything you need." Is that a great deal or what?
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble" (Matthew 6:34). Blessed is the one who is too busy in the day to worry and too sleepy at night to do the same. Work for God. Serve the Lord. Expend your energy for eternal things and fall asleep in peace.
When was the last time you sought first, as a priority, the kingdom of God—you poured your life into something that's eternal in order to bring as many people as possible under the reign of Christ? One of the greatest examples of someone who did this is Paul the apostle. His enemies beat him up, put him in jail, threatened his life, and almost killed him, and he just kept going.
At one of his missionary stops, the believers told him, "Paul, don't go to Jerusalem. They're going to imprison you; they may even kill you." Do you know what Paul said to them? "None of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God" (Acts 20:24). That's seeking first the kingdom of God.
So make that your first enterprise. And when you do, you won't have to sweat the small stuff; you can stop trying to carry the world on your shoulders. It's God's world, after all. Let Him run it, and let Him run your life. He's your Master and your heavenly Father, and when you seek His kingdom first, you can trust Him to provide you with everything you need.
Copyright © 2020 by Connection Communications. All rights reserved.
Some of us walk away from prayer feeling anxious and guilty, just as some of the greatest prayer warriors in history have. But the Bible shows us that prayer is meant to be life-giving and to leave us in peace. Discover how to pray boldly and powerfully with Craig Groeschel's book Dangerous Prayers.