As we watch our world, and many Christians along with them, fall prey to hard-heartedness and temptations of all sorts, I wonder if they understand what’s happening to them and around them?
Luke 8 tells us that there are those who hear the Word and receive it gladly, but then the Word, being in their heart, is choked with the cares, riches and pleasures of this life.
Are you being weighed down with the cares, riches and pleasures of this life? Or, worse yet, have you placed them above God in your life? How can you tell?
One way to tell is to think about how much time you spend with God. We all have a lot on our plate to take care of, but how often do you make time to spend with the Lord, talking with Him, praying to Him, reading the Word? Do you remember the last time you did any of those things? Are you, ask God instructs us in the book of Matthew, seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness?
Who’s the Boss?
Another way to tell where your priorities are is to think about the decisions you make. Do you stop and ask the Holy Spirit, given to us as counselor, before making decisions? Is God involved in the decision-making process when you buy things, go places, or do things? Or do you simply do what you see fit and what you see as best for your family, without any regard to what God may have to say about it.
Sometimes people don’t ask God before those decisions, because they think the answer is obvious, but it isn’t always clear. Remember; God sees the big picture in your life, not just the present situation.
A perfect example of this is the purchase of our first horse. When Star came into our lives, and the Lord spoke to my spirit and said “Buy the horse.”, I thought He was off His rocker. We had no money at the time to buy him, board him and care for him. We were scraping by, paycheck to paycheck. I argued with the Lord for a good week before He stepped back in silence, waiting for me to come to the end of myself. I then repented, and we bought the horse. He brought the money to pay for the horse and board him, and now today, 2 years later, we are caring for Star on our own hobby farm, which, ironically, is much cheaper than boarding him. And that horse has brought a joy and confidence to our oldest daughter that is absolutely priceless.
Often times, our plans for our family aren’t God’s plans. Life offers us several roads to take, and we don’t know where each of those roads will lead. But God does, and that’s why it’s crucial that we ask Him before making decisions, even the smallest of decisions.
The Right Perspective
When we moved to our hobby farm last fall, it allowed us to start looking at the world from the outside looking in, so to speak.
Out here in “the boonies” we are largely forgotten about by “modern” society, while they busily work to achieve the American Dream of “having it all”. But do they really have it all?
John 16:15 says:
You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
Are you working toward those things that will justify you before men? The things that you think will make you highly esteemed among men? If so, the fruits of your labors are worthless, and will profit you nothing.
Why? Because no matter how highly man may esteem you, there will always be someone who will come along and take your place, leaving you old and forgotten, like yesterday’s news.
Pastor Andrew Wommack spoke in a sermon once that when he would go and minister in nursing homes, he would find many men and women, sad and broken-hearted because they, though once had it all, were now replaced by others who were younger, prettier, richer. The world had forgotten them, and they were all alone.
This is what happens when we seek the riches of the world instead of the glorious, un-ending riches of a right relationship with Jesus Christ. If you want temporary fulfillment and happiness that comes and goes with the wind, choose to seek the riches of this world.
However, if you want true happiness, peace and joy, choose to seek God first, above all other things in your life. There you can find a contentment, joy and peace that are worth more than all of the money in the world.