Think about your priorities before you came to Christ. Your list for the day probably included things to do for your family, things to do for work and a few fun things just for yourself. All in all, your life was mostly about what was important to you.
But the follower of Jesus has a different set of priorities. While many of those other things are still on the list, what tops the list is pleasing Jesus and doing what is important to Him. Jesus Himself is the perfect model for us. Jesus said, “I seek not to please myself but him who sent me,” (John 5.30 NIV).
And again, “The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him,” (John 8.29 NIV).
Jesus always had His Father’s desires as His first priority. Now, just as Jesus made His priorities match His Father’s priorities, we are called to do the same thing. our priorities need to match the priorities of Jesus. (2 Corinthians 5.15 NLT) says “Jesus died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.” This is the normal Christian life — making Jesus’ life and mission our top priority. No longer do we live for ourselves; we live for Christ. No longer do we live to just please ourselves; we live to please King Jesus.
What do you think were some of Jesus’ priorities? Worship was a priority. Jesus always exalted the Father as the source of every good thing. In (John 17.7 ESV) Jesus tells His Father, “Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you.” Jesus never took credit for the good things in His life; He always acknowledged and worshiped His Father.
Prayer was a priority for Jesus. more than seventy times the Gospels record Jesus either speaking about or modeling prayer. obedience was a priority for Jesus. Jesus always gave Himself to His Father’s kingdom agenda. Dependence on the Spirit, reliance on God’s Word, sharing the gospel and cultivating healthy relationships — all these things were priorities for Jesus. Now, if these were Jesus’ priorities, don’t you think they should be ours too?
Halfway through Jesus’ ministry He sat down on a hillside and preached a message that is now called the Sermon on the mount. Buried in that sermon, He makes this statement: “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you,” (Matthew 6.33 ESV). many times we are afraid that if we make Jesus’ priorities our own, we will miss out on a lot of things. But Jesus promised that if we live for Him rather than ourselves and if we put Him and His priorities first in our lives, then He will give us the things that really matter. The things that don’t matter won’t matter anymore.
Photo Credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters