I Put God First in My Life

It’s hard to believe I am already at the end of week 12–I have worked with the power thoughts from the Joyce Meyer book Power Thoughts for all of 2011!  Twelve thoughts in twelve weeks–all powerful. 

Power Thought 12 had a special, and somewhat unexpected impact on my thinking. 

As I come to the end of my 12th week of power thoughts, and my final power thought, I put God first in my life, I have done quite a bit of reflecting.  I thought (naively) that this would be one of the easy ones for me because I am already in the habit of having my quiet time with God and studying the Bible first thing in the morning. 

What I came to realize over the course of the week is that putting God first in my life means putting him first in everything.  That means saying what he wants me to say instead of what I am bursting to get out.  That means spending money on what he wants.  That means spending time doing things that are important to him.  When what I want and what he wants are in conflict, God comes first.  Ouch! 

The quiet time is the easy part, absolutely.  The hard part is swallowing the juicy tidbit on the tip of my tongue, and speaking godly words instead.  The hard part is giving money to meet a need when I would rather keep that money for myself.  The hard part is giving hours in service to a friend or family member instead of pursuing my own recreation.  The hard part is giving up my personal preferences bit by bit in order to honor him and put him first.  Putting God first isn’t just spending the first thirty or sixty minutes of the day with him.  Putting God first means putting his way of doing and being right above everything else.  Needless to say, I did not master it in a week!  I am still learning all of the ways I can show my love for him by following through with this especially powerful power thought:  I put God first in my life.

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First Things First

     The final power thought in Joyce Meyer’s book Power Thoughts, #12 is the most important one of all:  I put God first in my life.  That means that God, his will, and being obedient to his word is our top priority.  We give him the first portion of all that we have–spending the first part of the day with him, giving, going to him first for advice instead of turning to a friend or the Internet. 

     Unlike the other chapters, this one is not sprinkled with lots of “think about it” questions.  At the very end, there is a simply stated question.  We are admonished to be honest with ourselves, and then Joyce Meyer asks if we have allowed anything to get before God in our priorities, and if so, to fix it.

     I realized in doing this exercise that I have put myself before God–only it looks a little more spiritual than that–I think of it in terms of improving myself and my life.  The (wrong) thinking here is that once I am improved and have my life really together, then  I will pursue God wholeheartedly!  This is such a fallacy–I have fallen for it before, and I am dismayed that I fell for it again.  I may long for transformation on many levels–but none of it can happen without God.  He changes us and improves us and enriches our lives as we pursue Him, love Him, and put Him first.