I remember when I was at university, there always seemed to be some event or some party which just so happened to be on the same night I had bible study. There were times that I would so easily be convinced to ditch my bible study time to attend a dinner or party with friends. It wasn't until months later that I realized how much I had compromised my spiritual growth as a Christian by those choices I made.
Why is it that "so many of us" so easily succumb to replacing those things that involve God? We spend countless hours watching television, but spend little or no time reading the word of God? We agree to work overtime on a Sunday to make some extra cash instead of making the time to attend church?
As Christians, we are called to live our lives in a way that is pleasing to God (2 Corinthians 5:9). We are so privileged to have the bible where we can obtain guidance to our daily living. When I became aware that my spiritual life was lacking, I thought - How do I expect to grow closer and in the knowledge of God if I don't make the effort to read His word and converse with God through prayer? Who and what matters the most to me? If God is so important to me, why was I only giving Him my second best?
Matthew 7 verse 33 says "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." Putting God first means we choose to live by His principles. We choose to resist the temptation to omit the very things that will help us grow as Christians like prayer, bible study, and meditation on God's word or serving Him in church. In so doing, God will provide us with all that we need. We need not worry about material things.
We live in a society that values material possessions and earthly pleasures and struggles to accept that which is eternal. Everyday we are bombarded by messages that tell us that what we have is not enough. Our own flesh desires get in the way of our relationship with God. One thing that we so often forget is that we are not fighting against flesh and blood, but against the powers of this dark world and spiritual forces of evil (Ephesians 6 verse 12). Satan will use anything he possibly can to keep us away from God and strain the relationship we have with our Lord.
I attended bible study one night and I was greatly encouraged by some friends in the group who had so much passion for the Lord. I chose to pray that God would give me the desire to have such a passion for Him that I would put Him first in my life - That I would choose not to conform to the pattern of this world, but make every effort to a live a life abiding in God. After all, if God is my core, then he should be placed above all in my life.
Kandima Awendila was born in Mozambique and lives and works as an IT Service
Desk Engineer on the Gold Coast.