Seeking First

Most Christians know Matthew 6:33. So why don’t we listen to it?

You’ve probably heard or read it before…

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

Matthew 6:33 is another one of those “card verses.” You know, the ones you find on inspirational cards or in a friend’s tweet. It sounds nice, doesn’t it? There’s a comforting tone to it. We like the sound of words like “kingdom” and “given.” It makes us feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

But did you ever think that we might be missing the most important word in the entire verse?

We like the part where we’re given all these things. A nice house and a car. A good family. A big bank account. You name it. We think that those are the things God’s gonna give us.

Uh…how about no?

Sure, God can bless you with amazing things. In fact, He says that He wants us to live life abundantly. He loves us.

The problem arises when we associate a good, abundant life with the accrual of things.

I think God orders the priorities a bit differently. I think He values time and relationship far more than toys and fancy clothes. I think He wants to be with us as opposed to lavishing nice things on us.

That means that before we receive all the things God has for us, we first have to seek. Ok, well, what does it mean to seek?

To answer that, let me tell you a story…

I’ve actually written about this before. You can find the full version in my first recap of my amazing year in 2015. But to prove my point, I’ll give you the shorter version here.

I was ready to propose to my fiance. I wanted to do it my way. God had things work out His way. His way was better. Sarah and I got married. Now she’s my wife.

The end.

Ok, that was the really short version. But my point is this: I was focused on receiving what I wanted. I wasn’t seeking God at first. When I finally came around to my senses and started asking Him about the whole process, He revealed how His way was better.

And then we won a free trip to the Super Bowl.

In the Good Times and the Bad

Now, look, I’m not saying every time you seek God He’s going to give you a trip to the Super Bowl. You won’t find the prosperity gospel coming out of my mouth.

Sometimes life is tough. Sometimes it just plain sucks. Sometimes it feels like everything is going wrong. There are times when we feel like giving up. Like no one in the world cares.

Those are the exact times when we need to seek God.

Sometimes life is great. Sometimes we feel like we’re on top of the world — like nothing can go wrong. We feel as if everyone is on our side and there is nothing we can’t conquer.

Those are the exact times when we need to seek God.

Think about this lighthouse.

When people are in their darkest moments, being tossed this way and that way by raucous waves, they search for the lighthouse diligently. It guides them through stormy seas until they reach the safety of the shore.

When tourists are having an enjoyable vacation and they want a serene view of ocean vistas, they travel for miles to see this lighthouse. It’s a destination for them, and they will go to great lengths just to be there and experience it.

In both cases, when the lighthouse is found, there is great joy. In fact, you might call that abundant joy.

That’s seeking.

We should seek God just as much in the good days as we do in the bad. It’s the seeking that brings about the abundance. It’s that interaction with God and truly asking Him questions that brings about all the things that will be added to us.

But it starts with seeking first.

Aaron Charles is a writer and marketing account executive from Indiana. You can connect with him on Twitter, Medium or Instagram. Aaron and his wife Sarah run a Medium publication called Cooking With Sarah that documents their weekly cooking adventures.

Thanks for reading! If you liked this, I think you’d be interested in what I wrote about Jeremiah 29:11.

Christ-follower. Husband to @SarahLCharles. Simple moments hold great power. Connect with me at my website: www.aarondcharles.com

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