Yesterday I really dug into the phrase offered by Jesus in Matt.6:33: Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you. I’ve heard this phrase over and over during my lifetime. But what does it truly mean, Lord? What is the kingdom? What constitutes your righteousness?
I looked at this same verse in the Message to see if I could glean more insight: Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns met.
To steep: to soak in liquid in order to cleanse, soften or extract a given property form; to infuse or subject thoroughly to; to saturate.
I love this image!
The very first line about steeping my life in God-reality reminds me of Brother Lawrence practising the Presence of God every day in each menial task he took on. In this, he found God, and the presence of God could saturate his entire day. I was reminded yesterday that God is always, always surrounding me. To steep my life in God-reality means to open myself up to find God in each and every moment. Because He is standing there waiting for me to notice him!
Steeping my life in God-initiative reminds me of a book study called Experiencing God by Blackaby. It’s the idea that God is always working in the world, and in people around us, and if we would only open our eyes and learn to recognize this, we could join God in touching people’s lives with His love. A version of recognizing God-initiative is ‘treasure-hunting’ that you can read about here. I have found that the Dunamis courses offered by PRMI also really focus on this idea of joining with God in where He is at work, rather than us deciding on our agenda, or our ministry.
And finally, steeping my life in God-provisions. I think that we in North America have the hardest time with this. I know I do. What do I really need God to provide for me when I have enough resources to meet my daily physical needs? This verse is talking about physical provision: clothing, food, etc. If we don’t need God to come through with physical provision, we won’t see it happen. I think we can learn a lot from others who have had to completely depend on God to provide even the basics of life. This video shows an example of a man who does just that.
Perhaps I’ll begin by steeping in God-reality… just imagining Him beside me and really trying to remember to talk to him as I go about my day. Perhaps you’ll join me?