Saturday, May 12, 2012

First Place

“If you think of this world as a place intended simply for our happiness, you find it quite intolerable: think of it as a place of training and correction and it’s not so bad.”
C.S. Lewis

Not too long ago, we had a scare with our oldest son.  He began experiencing severe muscular pain and would even wake up in the night screaming out in pain.  So, we did what any parent would do and we took him to the doctor.  They couldn’t find anything wrong with him, so they sent us home.  He still continued with the episodes, and I made the mistake of trying to self-diagnose him by using the Internet. By the time I was done reading all the possibilities, I was scared out of my mind.  I began begging God to heal him and questioning why in the world this would happen to him before we even knew what, if anything, was wrong.  Thankfully, the problem was nothing serious, but throughout this event, I realized my priorities were out of line. 

I could not bear the thought of anything happening to my son.  As parents, we all hope and pray that we don’t have to go through this, but where are we going to turn when life gets hard?  Are we going to trust that God is in control, or are we going to question Him and cling even tighter to the things of this earth?  We are all going to experience pain, loss, and hurt in this life.  But, what are we going to do during these times?  If we are clinging to the things of this world instead of Christ, we will sink because our foundation is not strong.  In the experience with my son, I realized that I was placing him above Christ.  I was more concerned with his welfare than anything else.  I didn’t want to trust God…I just wanted the problem to be fixed, no matter what. 

When our priorities are out of line, everything in our life will suffer.  If Christ is not my top priority, I will be disappointed and disillusioned.  And, the crazy thing is: I will love my son more when Christ is first in my life.  I will love my husband more when Christ is first in my life.  I will love everyone more when Christ is first in my life.  And, I can rest in the assurance of knowing that Christ “will never leave me or forsake me” (Hebrews 13:5). 

How can we daily make Christ first in our lives?
  • Spend time in His Word each day.
  • Don’t make excuses.  Life can get busy, but this should never be an excuse for not spending time in His Word.  If we can’t make time for Him, He can’t be our top priority.
  • Give thanks.  Instead of always wanting more, give thanks for what you’ve been given.
  • Don’t try to escape.  When trials come our way, we always look for the easiest way out.  But, God can teach us through our trials.  Pray that God will make you stronger as you face trials in this life.
  • Give your children back to God.  Remember that our children are only entrusted to us for a short time.  Ask God to give you strength to give them back to Him, knowing that His plans are best.    

 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock.  Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock.  But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand.  When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”  Matthew 7:24-27

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