But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6:33 KJV

This verse has become the anthem of my heart. Growing up, I heard it repeatedly. But at one point in my life I had to ask: What does it really mean to seek God’s kingdom first?

One word: Prioritize.

His commandments, His desires, His love, should all be the center of what we are and desire to be. All other entities find their position as a result.

It is always hard for our human minds to interpret this—but I soon realized it wasn’t about fitting these words into my life onlywhen convenient because “times have changed” or “God understands I’m so busy.”

Jesus was pretty clear when He said to forsake all and follow Him. What He said then, He means now too. Even if that means doing things we’re not comfortable with, pushing away anything that hinders our relationship with Him, or sacrificing the dreams we want most.

Many of us try to ignore how deep and raw this commitment really is.

Sure, the Lord wants to give us blessing after blessing. He wants to open every window of Heaven and rain down gifts, both spiritual and natural, into our souls. He wants to fulfill the desires of our hearts. Sometimes we forget, however, that it is humble obedience and faith which bring Him on the scene.

When I finally said, “It’s all about You, Lord” instead of constantly asking Him to do great works for me, I found a peace beyond belief.

Giving up and giving in is the hardest part. And it needs to be daily.

The good news is … He takes care of it from there.

So many nights I’ve been overwhelmed by an ominous stack of work, like many of you. Then this Scripture would come to me. Before I did anything else, I cleared my mind and gave God a bit of my time. I would pray, read the Word or listen to a sermon.

Guess what? I felt refreshed. More than I ever would by watching YouTube or simply staring at my computer, begging it to write my papers for me.

God honors us when He is honored as our top priority. He’s jealous of us (Deuteronomy 4:24).

For so much of my life I was scared of letting go; I wanted control. But (better late than never) I at last understood that I just need to trust Him. Plain and simple.

No, it’s not as if God doesn’t want us to try at anything in life. He just wants us to do it His way the first time, all the time. Of course He wants us to succeed, but He wants to prove that it is His strength in each of us, because we are nothing on our own.

So I encourage you: Let Jesus Christ be at the forefront of your thoughts and the guide of your heart. He’ll put everything else into place. He promises.

Copyright © Anissa Rowe. Used by permission.