1/02/2016

How To Seek God First, Jan 2, 2016

I wrote about how I first applied Matthew 6:33 in the 1980's and 90's in my first post of 2016: How To Seek First God's Kingdom. How might I apply Matthew 6:33 today? These are my random, rambling, ruminating, reflections:
  • Don't cheat my conscience. Paul says, "So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man" (Ac 24:16, NIV). I cheat my conscience when I do and think of what I should have no business doing and thinking of. Yet like Paul I know that I do not do what I want, but instead do what I do not want to do (Ro 7:15-16). Lord, have mercy.
  • Guard my heart. Proverbs says, "Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life" (Pro 4:23, NLT). I need to do so because "The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?" (Jer 17:9, NLT)
  • Delight in the Scriptures (Ac 20:27). The psalmist cried out, "Oh, how I love your instructions! I think about them all day long" (Ps 119:97, NLT). Also, the psalmist said, "Instead, his delight is in the Lord's instruction, and he meditates on it day and night" (Ps 1:2, HCSB).
  • Check my priorities (Mt 6:33). Is God's name and honor my utmost concern, or is it my own wounded pride and ego that deceptively gets in the way?
  • Love others (Jn 13:34-35; Lev 19:18). This is always easier said than done! This needs intensive work every single day.
  • Never get angry and loose my temper. "Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper—it only leads to harm" (Ps 37:8, NLT). This is only possibly by the Spirit (Galatians 5:16, 18, 25).
  • Seek wisdom from God (Jas 1:5).
  • Never depart and deviate from grace (Ac 20:24; Isa 1:18).
A shorter simpler list might be:
  1. Love God. Heart.
  2. Love others. Community.
  3. Love Scripture. Solitude.
  4. Love justice. Communication.