What are your priorities in life? Do you favor your family, work, social life, church?
What we prioritize will ultimately make, or break, our life. In other words, our life with someday turn for the worse on a “bad” priority, or turn for the better because of a “good” choice regarding priority.
A story is told about a young banker who was driving his BMW on a mountain road. The car went off a cliff, but he was able to leap from his car at the last minute. Although he was alive, he lost his arm.
A trucker stopped to pick him up. As he got into the truck he was moaning, “My BMW, my new BMW.”
The trucker pointed at the banker's shoulder and said, “You've got bigger problems than that car! We've got to find your arm. Maybe the surgeons can sew it back on!”
The banker looked where his arm had been, paused a moment, and groaned, “Oh no! My Rolex! My new Rolex!”
In our life, we might have priorities which place our family before God, or work before family, or friends, before family. We can notice our life going awry; for instance, our family might start to become rebellious, and we realize that we have been putting work before our family.
Of course, God declares Himself to be our master, and if we acknowledge that then we should put Him first. Above our work (for He is the one who promotes and gives success), above our family (for He also gave our family to us); above even our ministry (ironically and illogically we can even put the church above God.)
During the time of the Old Testament, when Zerubbabel was governor or the Jewish people who had come back from captivity in Persia, the temple of God was left unbuilt.
The people of Judah had good houses, and they were able to eat, but the bible says they didn’t eat enough.
God told the Israelites in Haggai:
“You have planted much grain, but have harvested very little. You have food to eat, but not enough to make you full. You have wine to drink, but not enough to get drunk on! You have clothing, but not enough to keep you warm. And workers cannot earn enough to live on.” (Haggai 1:6)
The priorities of these guys was not in line. We see in verse 2, “Thus says the Lord of Hosts, ‘This people says, the time has not come, even the time for the house of the Lord to be rebuilt.” (Haggai 1:2)
The people were saying that it wasn’t time to rebuild.
Sure, there were struggles: The people of the area around Jerusalem discouraged the Jews. But disregarding those struggles, the Jews knew that they should put God first.
This God was the one who led Abraham to a good land, led the Jews out of Egypt, and led them again to the Promised Land. Over and over He showed his goodness and love to them, just like He shows to His people today.
Even when they went to Babylon as captives, the Lord led them out after their intended time. They went there because of their continued rebellion, but God showed His love time after time.
In the same way, if we are faithful in placing God and His will first, He will bless us. It might be a struggle but God will always give us the victory when we do it.
"Go to the mountains, get lumber, and build the house. I will be pleased with it, and I will be honored," declares the LORD.” (Haggai 1:8)
In these times when it is ever more difficult make honest and just decisions, when we are tempted to base our actions on whatever will bring us profit or pleasure, good reason ought to tell us that we should honor God in our action.
Andrew Scribner - firstname.lastname@example.org
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