“Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness…”Matthew 6:33
Have you ever lost something precious? Of course you have. My five-year-old loses precious things every day, and immediately, I hear a panicked voice, “Mom, I can’t find ________.”
It seems obvious that when something is lost the answer is to look diligently. But seeking is not our instinct. As evidenced by my daughter’s worrying and complaining, seeking is something that must be learnt. Even when she thinks she is looking (one quick glance around the room she is currently in), she is really just waiting for her missing item to appear, or for me to get it for her. I usually find her item under a blanket or in her closet. You have to move things, open doors and drawers, I tell her.
Similarly, we must learn to seek the Lord and his kingdom first. Seeking takes effort. Seek means to search for, to attempt to obtain, to desire to possess, strive for, to aim. If we can’t find him in our darkness, then we look again, because he’s there. Lift up the restlessness of your heart and look underneath. Open up the drawer of business and peer within. Put your greatest heart-focus on seeking your Lord.
Seek first…not your job, your children’s wellbeing, not that perfect relationship, not your reputation. All of those things are good to seek. But what is our priority? We know what we are seeking first by how we feel. If we are seeking first his kingdom, we should be experiencing a deep, satisfying rest and joy. When we run around seeking after other things, rest eludes us. Overwhelmed is probably not an adequate word to describe the frenzy that some of us feel in life right now as we go about our duties, fulfilling our commitments, holding our heads high and gritting our teeth.
I must admit that my soul weariness is signaling some messed up priorities. I can make excuses, but when it comes down to it, I’m making choices. He may be first in my intentions, but he’s often second in my actions.
Resting in grace and aiming after God. Rest is a gift we receive when we come to Jesus and seek him first. We come and receive, that’s grace. We seek, that’s our calling.