God Must Come First
"I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food." (Job 23:12b)
How do we know when someone really loves us? One way we can tell is when that person gives up something they love in order to spend time with us. Imagine that you came to your parents when they were busy with something they enjoy—maybe reading a good book or watching a basketball game on TV. What if your mom put her book down and said, "I can read this book any old time. I would rather spend time with you. Let's go for a walk!" Or what if your dad turned off the TV and said, "You're more important to me than a basketball game. I'd rather go shoot some hoops in the driveway with you." If your mom or your dad were willing to give up something for you, you'd know that they really cared about spending time with you.
It's the same way in our relationship with God. We show our love for God by showing that He comes first. One way that we can show Him how much we love Him is by spending time in His Word—even if it means giving up something else we love in order to do it. God's Word is the primary place where He reveals Himself, the best place to get to know Him.
Job was a man who really, really loved God. He said that he would rank God's Word even higher than the food he needed to stay alive! He would be willing to give up food if necessary, because God's Word was more important to him.
We don't always have to give up food or a sport or a hobby to spend time in God's Word. Sometimes it just means pulling our thoughts away from some other fascinating topic we would rather think about. It means turning our minds to think about what God is saying, and turning our hearts to obeying.
Are you willing to love God by showing Him that time in His Word is very important to you—every day?
We show love for God by placing great importance on our time in His Word.
» Have I spent time reading and thinking about God's Word yet today?
» Is there anything I've been doing that is stealing away the time I would usually spend with God?
» What do I need to do to guard my time with God?
Truth In Real Life
“Today is mine. Tomorrow is not my business.”
Born to missionary parents in Belgium on December 21, 1926, Elisabeth Elliot was only a few months old when her family moved to the United States. Her father was the editor of the Sunday School Times – a Sunday School paper read and distributed by hundreds of churches around the country.
Elisabeth Elliot is best-known for her marriage to the missionary, Jim Elliot, who was captured and killed in Ecuador by Auca natives in January of 1956. Their daughter Valerie was only 10 months old when Jim was killed, and Elisabeth was heartbroken over their loss. She could have given up and gone home like most people would have done.
But instead, Elisabeth chose to stay. She continued working with the very same people group who had taken her husband’s life. She met two Auca women who agreed to live with her as roommates for one year. Because of her friendship with these ladies, she was able to reach into the tribe and win over many souls to Jesus Christ.
When Elisabeth and Valerie returned to the United States, two years after the death of Jim Elliot, Elisabeth began writing and speaking. Her most famous book is titled Through Gates of Splendor: the true story of Jim Elliot and the other four young missionaries who were speared to death while trying to share the Gospel with the Aucas in Ecuador.
Elisabeth Elliot, whose unmistakable courage encouraged many around the world to consider Who God is and why His Gospel is so important, is recognized now as one of the most influential Christian writers and speakers of the 20th century.
What would it take for you to give up on God and what He wants you to be doing? Elisabeth lost her husband and yet was still concerned about the souls of those who killed him. Do your decisions magnify God’s grace and truth in a powerful way in front of people who are watching you?
Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me.