First Things First

Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. – Matthew 6:25-34.

Tina Williams of St. Augustine, Florida has her priorities. On Super Bowl Sunday Tina bought a case of beer and carefully strapped a seat belt around it. However, in the backseat was a baby girl which was not restrained. The woman told the arresting officer that she had had a few drinks and she staggered when she stepped out of the vehicle. She was arrested for Driving Under the Influence along with charges of child endangerment, driving without a license, running a red light, and no child restraint.

Tina had her priorities which was apparently making sure her beer made it home safely. Thankfully, an officer was able to stop Tina before her ride home became a very tragic event. Being arrested is never pleasant but the alternative in this case would have been so much worse. We have to wonder how Tina’s priorities became so upside down?

Abraham Maslow presented in a paper in 1943, “A Theory of Human Motivation” his “Hierarchy of Needs.” I remember studying this in psychology classes and it is presented in a diagram of a pyramid with the most basic primal needs at the bottom. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is in this order: physiological, safety, love/belonging, esteem, and self actualization.

I find it interesting and spiritually profound that God’s hierarchy of needs is the opposite of Maslow’s. God says that man’s first need is spiritual not physical. Our greatest need in this life is the opposite of what man in his greatest wisdom says that we need. If we will put God first in our lives then everything else will have the hand of God upon it. We honor God with our lives and He promises to provide for our physical needs.

How can we put God first? We do so by making time for Him in our lives. Begin our days by committing through prayer each day to Him. Spend time each day in His Word, and always be aware of His presence. Put service to Him above the rewards of this world. Assemble with other believers to worship together if not providentially hindered as often as possible. As I remember one preacher putting it, “You don’t have to do this. You, get to do this.” You don’t have to live your life like some wild animal. Instead you can live your life to the glory of God making an eternal difference in the lives of those you encounter along the way. You can live like a pauper or you can live as a child of the King it just depends upon your priorities.

(God’s hierarchy of needs is opposite of what our human reasoning would tell us that we need.)

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