Saturday, September 4, 2010

Seek First

I am looking back through my posts because I can't remember what I have said the past couple months about what God has been teaching me and didn't want to repeat myself. I am now remembering how little I have blogged but instead just sat in my thoughts this summer. 

I usually puke them out to you all the moment I have a thought but have been in a season of just sitting and listening.  It has been refreshing.  I realize how often I run ahead of God.  A quick prayer and I am off and running without waiting for the response, one of the many things God was talking to me about this summer.

I was going to start at the beginning but as I was reviewing my journal I can't really see where there is a beginning just a process.  So I guess you will receive each thought individually as I decide to share.

Boy! That introduction really is setting me up to tell you alot of deep stuff.  It really isn't that deep but it has been meaningful to me to sit with God and find a peace I really needed during a time in life full of transition.

This summer God led me to what is going to be our family verse for the next year.  Matthew 6:33, "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well."

It isn't an original verse but I really have been feeling lately that the impact of some of the popular verses gets lost because of how often it is referred to.  Yet they are common verses because of the powerful truths contained in them.  So this year as a family we are going to study some of the scriptures that you hear so often you don't even think about them.  But I am getting ahead of myself.  I will tell you about that some other day.

Our family talked about the Matthew 6:33 seek first scripture during our weekend away this summer.  We spent time really looking at the context of the scripture, before it Jesus is asking the people why they are worrying so much.  Jesus points out how clearly he provides for all his creatures and reminds the people (us) of how much more he loves them (us) and so will clearly provide for them (us) as well.  My sister had an amazing experience recently to further emphasize that point.

So we don't have to worry because God provides for all our needs.  And lest we are worried He doesn't know what we need Jesus assures us He does, v32 "and your heavenly Father knows that you need them."

Apparently Jesus was worried we wouldn't know how to properly spend all the free time we would have if we stopped worrying, a valid concern since we had been wasting it worrying before, so in the next verse he tells us what to do, "seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things (all our needs that we have been worrying about) will be given to you as well."

But then we (OK me but I drag the whole family along on my journeys) wondered what the word Seek really meant.  How exactly do you go about Seeking God?  I copied that page out of the old dictionary we have as John was packing the car for the weekend so we could answer this burning question I knew my family would have when we discussed this verse.

Seek: To make search or enquiry for; to look for; to strive after

My men were rivoted to their seats as I read the definition of "seek" to them.  Still we did have wonderful discussion about what that would mean for us both as a family and individually to seek God in our lives.  We talked about finding time, reading scripture and devotionals, priorities and prayer. 

Of course we can't ignore the word "first" in this discussion.  I figured we knew what that meant so I didn't copy that definition out of the dictionary.  But I did have Jake read the story of Jehoshaphat.  I didn't know exactly where in the bible it was but figured somewhere in the history of Israel.  Lucky for us God knew where it was and had Jake open his bible right to it.

The weekend before I had been at She Speaks and one of the main speakers had focussed on this story from the old Testement.  I will let you go read it yourself (In 2 Chronicles 20 in case you don't open right to it as well.)  The basic story is that Judah is under attack (again) and it isn't looking good (as usual).  When Jehoshaphat hears about this impending doom he...Seeks First!

"Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah.  The people of Judah came togeher to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him."

OK so lets say I am lounging around the house on a typical morning preparing to have my queit time when a friend calls and asks if she can come over in an hour.  The first thing I will do when I get off the phone is...start picking up the house, get dressed because I am still in PJ's, wipe down the bathroom and wonder if I have any food to serve her.  When even a slight change in my schedule occurs I do not think to stop and seek God before I prepare.  When problems come into my life do I first seek God or do I first start solving the problem?  More often than not the answer is solve the problem.

Yet with a "vast amy" bearing down on Jehoshaphat what does he do?  Gather the troops?  Sharpen the blades?  Reinforce the city? Map out a battle plan?  NO.  He first seeks God.  And upon doing so discovers what a waste of time getting ready for a battle would have been since God tells him they won't have to fight.  So instead he puts together a choir to sing praises to God and sends them out in front of the troops.  This of course would make no sense to anyone else but Jehosphaphat and the people of Judah had sought God first and they knew there was nothing to worry about.  Sure enough by the time they reached the other army everyone was dead and Judah's army never lifted a finger.

So that is what we are doing this year as a family.  Seeking God.  Seeking Him first.  Seeking to discover what he has for us when we let go of our worry, stop thinking about our own needs and turn our eyes and our hearts toward God.


  1. this is a wonderful message and beautifully written. that verse has special meaning to me. a few years ago i was having coffee with tiff and giving a long, lengthy rendition of all the ways my life was unsatisfactory. after i finished spewing, i sat back and waited for my friend to pour forth her always awesome commentary and wisdom onto me. She took a deep breath and said to me, simply "Seek First, my friend. Seek First."

  2. I am lifted up by this my dear.