February 19

Text: Matthew 6:33, 34

"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (NASB)

Following Jesus changes priorities in a dramatic fashion.  In some way before following Jesus, the person’s decisions usually focused on benefits to self.  In the initial stages of following Jesus that person may still focus on self—my Savior, my God, my repentance, my salvation, my blessings, my forgiveness, and my home in heaven.

At some point, the voice of spiritual maturity and understanding shout, “This is about much more than you!  This is much bigger than your existence!  Yes, your blessings in Jesus Christ are real.  However, God’s work in Jesus Christ involves much more than you.  If your determination to be righteous is sincere, you need a basic understanding of the ‘more.’”

Priority #1: God through Jesus is building a kingdom.  A kingdom is not a democracy—the only opinion that matters is the King’s.  You are not the king, but a servant of the king.  To be a servant of this King, you must be committed to being righteous.  You will not automatically know the King’s righteousness.  You must learn it.  Your commitment to His concepts must be real and fervent.

Priority #2: You must trust the king enough to be ruled by Him instead of being controlled by physical anxieties.  The king cares for those sincere about their commitment.  These people do not allow the uncertain future to control their minds.  God’s righteousness determines how they behave “now.”   They always are busy if they allow righteousness to address the problems of “now.”  Righteous people address the future by addressing now.

Suggestion for reflection: Seek to grasp God’s work to make His rule reality.  (Read 1 Timothy 4:6-10.)

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