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First Things First

Everything else in life can wait, but the search for God cannot. (Beatle—George Harrison)

Why do we walk around wanting and not having? More often than not, the reason we fail to receive the best that life has to offer is because we have gotten our priorities out of order. “Whatever is at the center of our lives will be the source of our security, guidance, wisdom, and power” (Stephen Covey). So the secret of all success is to put first things first, last things last and in between things in between.

Our lives, when compared to forever, are nothing more than a microscopic speck on a line representing eternity. So the man or woman who wants to do well must plan for life and life after death. One of our big problems is that we try to center God around our lives; instead of centering our lives around God. We choose careers, make business deals, marry, form partnerships and arrange our time so that nothing remains for the Lord. We too readily forfeit our spiritual well being for secular concerns. You and I mold, make, and shape our world; then we say to the Lord, “Jesus, bless it all.” We live by what Dr. Thomas Kelly calls straddle arrangements and compromises between our allegiance to the surface level and the Divine Creator. He said, “We are trying to live several selves at once, without all our selves being organized by a single mastering life within us.”

The tendency of many is to run after a host of desires that parade before our passions. We behave like foolish children running wild in a toy store, ignoring the fact that there is a price tag attached to our wants. Wholesome desire is developed as we nurture our love for the Lord. Brother Lawrence comments, “Nothing can go wrong excepting one thing. That is, that God may slip from my mind if I do not keep on my guard. If He is there, the universe is with me and my task is simple and clear.”

Christ gave us two great commandments: “Love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as you love yourself.” Love is the key that unlocks the storehouse of God’s best. “Those who make God’s love the one and only aim before which other things bow themselves—they are the ones who bring honor to the Lord” (Charles Spurgeon).

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