There have been a lot of contests today – and to be honest non of them really interested me that much. And I don’t mean in a dismissive act of snobbery… Not the FA Cup, or the Premiership or the Eurovision. Yet I wondered what happened to the many lost and to the very few who won. What do you do after the euphoria wears thin or the sadness and regret linger? I would think that both sides would need to REFOCUS.
Oh how much we need to do this, daily as Christ-followers. Jesus’ most influential presentation of the Christian faith is the Sermon on the Mount. Here He teaches us about the right way to live, our influence, our privileges and our destiny as His followers. And right in the middle is one of the most profound verses in the Bible:
‘But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.’ Matthew 6:33
Jesus speaks these words in the context of human worry about material things: clothes, food – fears and pressure we can all identify with.
We live in a world that often expects to attain everything with as little work, expense or sweat. Just think of it: the latest diet that does not involve self-discipline or the gym, or the purchase of the latest gadgets (even if you don not really have the adequate amount of money). Words like discipline, rigor, sacrifice, passion, determination, endurance and resilience are often ‘strangers’ to our vocabulary (and lifestyle).
Yet living the Kingdom way (as Jesus wants us) means ‘seeking’. The image that comes to my mind is that of a determined and driven explorer that longs to find the promised new territory or treasure. Not content with just reading or hearing about it – but desiring to be there him/herself. No matter what barriers will come in the way, no matter what cost, no matter what sacrifice.
If we want to truly experience God’s blessing in our lives we should never cease to be ‘seekers’ of His kingdom. That means that we are on a journey. It means we keep drawing near to Him in prayer – allowing that Relationship to become deeper every day. It means we study His word, realising that it is life-giving. It means that we influence our society and culture (and not vice-versa). It ultimately means we let go of our control over life and become HIStory makers!
If you become available to God to live through you, if you pursue His agenda and live for his glory there is no telling what God can do in you/through you on this earth! Make this your prayer and confession:
‘Yes Lord, walking in the way of Your truth we wait eagerly for You, for Your name and renown are the desire of our souls.” Isaiah 26:8