“Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).
Everyone wants to be successful. Everyone wants to be healthy. Every Christian wants to grow and mature in their faith.
That’s fantastic! It’s good that this is what everyone desires. Imagine a world where everyone lived into these wants and made them realities.
If everyone wants these things, why are so few actually succeeding? What are the biggest factors that differentiates those who succeed and the rest of us? Two things: Priorities and Discipline.
First, has to do with priorities. Those who succeed choose what is best over what they want now.
Seek first. Pursue what is best with every ounce of your being. There will be plenty of times when you won’t want to be disciplined, to work out, to study, to practice. There will be plenty of times when you will want to cheat on your diet, your character, your promises.
Seek first. Choose what is best over what you want now.
Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. The second quality of those who succeed is discipline. Successful people do consistently what others do occasionally. This has to do with discipline. Now only do they know what is best, but they have the discipline to do consistently what others do occasionally. Key is consistency. Key is discipline.
Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. And when we do, all these things will be given to us as well.
Choose what is best over what you want now – priority
Do consistently what others do occasionally – discipline
“There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes. a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community” (Proverbs 6:16-19).
The LORD hates.
We don’t see that often. When we think of God we think of love. After all, God is a God of love. But because God is a God of love, God’s love must also hate. The reason for this is because God doesn’t love for the sake of love. God loves us. We are the object of God’s love. Therefore, God hates that which harms us.
What are the things God hates?
A haughty eye
A lying tongue
Hands that shed innocent blood
A heart that devises wicked schemes
Feet that are quick to rush into evil
A false witness who pours out lies
A person who stirs up conflict
Notice that each of these things destroys community. These things make community impossible. Because God loves us, God hates that which destroys God’s community.
God’s community is precious to him because we are precious to him. God is most pleased when we live in harmony and unity.
“Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or turn away from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding” (Proverbs 4:5-7).
If you’re a fool, it’s because you choose to be one.
Being a fool has nothing to do with being ignorant. Ignorance has no moral undertones. It just means one doesn’t know, not one is incapable of learning. An ignorant person can stop being ignorant by learning, by understanding.
Being foolish, being a fool is entirely different than being ignorant. A fool is one by choice. And that’s just dumb. That’s foolish. Shame on fools.
The text today says, “GET” wisdom. “GET” understanding.
The Hebrew verb for “Get” is written in the imperative. This is a command. God commands us to “GET” wisdom and understanding. Wisdom and understanding is within everyone’s grasp. We just need to go and get it. We need to pursue it. We need to want it.
James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given you.”
If anyone is a fool, if anyone lacks understanding, it’s by choice.
Don’t be a fool.
How can we “Get” wisdom and understanding?
Ask God. God promises to give us wisdom.
Remember God’s words and obey them. We are told, “Do not forget my words or turn away from them.”