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Seeking First God...
“But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His Kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.” Matthew 6:33 AMP
For so many the aspect in relationship with God is the blessings that He can provide. Where it is they go wrong is that instead of seeing the blessedness of the relationship and doing as the scriptures says to do with in context or with in this order of things (seek ye first the kingdom, and His righteousness), they look to the blessings first and want to be righteous after they get what it is they are wanting for themselves.
Not to say that God cant or wont bless a person with something, but it is in His provision that He is revealing Himself, and that He would like that individual(s) to head in His direction, to seek Him, to know Him, and learn His way.
When one receives Christ and desires the blessings of God, they must be taught how to maintain or to be able to keep such. When someone is unlearned in the way of righteousness, and does as they wish with this second chance at life rather than doing what God had for them to do, they waste this gift by living according to their own will, know that they can or will lose everything as well as that which they may have had even to began with.
“Whoever finds his [lower] life will lose it [the higher life], and whoever loses his [lower] life on my account will find it [the higher life]. Matthew 10:39 AMP
“For whoever wants to save his [higher, spiritual, eternal] life, will lose it [the lower, natural, temporal life which is lived only on earth]; and whoever gives up his life [which is lived only on earth] for my sake and the Gospel’s sake will save it [his higher, spiritual life in the eternal kingdom of God]. Mark 8:35 AMP
As we can see from these to text, that with instruction and in doing things God’s way we will find life. Doing things your way or striving for those things which we think make up our lives can be lost, and even what we started out with as well. We must seek after God and do as He shows us to do or it will be costly.
“You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” Psalms 16:11 NAS
Jesus went on to say that if we truly wanted to be His disciple that we must take up our cross and follow Him. Imagine what that means for you and me, to take up our crosses and follow Him? Those who where about to die carried crosses, not to say a literal sense of a physical death, but rather to put your own flesh to death and the desires there of, or also known as dying to self and our own selfish way of doing things.
One day in doing that which God desires of us in doing these things He has instructed us to do; we may be able to say as Paul did in Galatians.
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” Galatians 2:20 NAS
Then as we grow to know God and are His we will say,
“Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” Galatians 5:24 NAS
It is here that we must understand that in our pursuit of God, His Kingdom, and His righteousness that we must address the issues of our flesh, or sin. We must die to self, our way of doing things, and crucify our fleshly desires and learn from God what is right. As we begin to strive toward God and that which He desires of us, we begin to learn the way of righteousness and are conformed to His likeness and image that He so desires.
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2 NAS
In seeking after God, and following Jesus, we truly begin to walk with Him we learn from Him. In this we begin to observe the things that He reveals to us. Our observations, which are with eyes open to the truth, will begin to see Jesus as the teacher in the class room of Life. The more willing we become in our pursuit of God to learn, or even be taught by Him is when we begin to experience life and the transforming power of God in our lives.
“Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” Colossians 3:2-3 NAS
Upon learning through what is observed, reading your bible, prayer, and fellowship is that we will see that God’s word must be applied to our everyday lives. For some, the text that they read must become more than just words in a book that they feel they need to read to be considered a Christian. God’s word is more than a bunch of gathered suggestions collected and handed through time.
God’s word is filled with instructions, these things we must apply as we learn and do just that, which it has conveyed and commanded. God’s instruction leads us as the people of God into the way of righteousness and shows us the way of life that God has intended for us. In James it says it best,
“But be doers of the Word [obey the message]. And not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth].” James 1:22
Observation: you learning from Him, His way, and His word
Application: doing just what you have learned
Expectation: when you do what God has said, He does what He says He will do…
In doing what God has clearly instructed us to do throughout his Holy Scriptures there is promise. This should birth an expectation with in your heart knowing that God can not lie, does perform in response to faith, what His word says He will do. Know that our blessings are not based on our performance, but with obedience to God’s word there are many blessings that are produced in doing so. When you do that which God has said, I am not saying that life will be perfect. In life there will be trials, testing, and hardships to overcome, and even persecutions.
God being the True Living God is the God of relationship. He desires real relationships with His children. Like any parent, you desire your children to listen and obey. Why? Because you know what’s best, and am desiring for them to grow to understand your love, reasoning and wisdom behind your instruction, and have them grow up to lead lives that are safe, being intelligent decision makers who will in turn live life to the fullest of their potential you see in them.
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given you as well.” Matthew 6:33 NIV
When we put on Christ, are in a relationship with Him we begin to come into life more and more as we continue to seek God. In knowing Jesus, following Jesus, and doing all that Jesus desires for us is conveyed throughout His word, we too can grow to maturity, and experience all that God has said He would do.
“Be Willing, Be Obedient, Be Blessed”
Here is a thought as I close this chapter.
Your Father has a desire to see you soar. As a plane in flight, free, and able to go great distances. You must first use that which He has provided in materials with instructions, to construct a runway. This runway is needed in order to take flight.
In taking these materials and not doing so as instructed with them, no matter how they may be constructed, trying to take flight will only lead to the same results, failure to launch. A plane grounded, unable to reach its full potential or serve its true intended purpose.
By recognizing your need to follow the instructions, as well as using the materials provided, in doing so you will experience the desired intent by the One who holds the flight plan, to have you soaring so you may be able to live….