What’s At the Top of Your List?
On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come. 1 Corinthians 16:2
In my addiction, my first thought every morning was always about my pills. Where are they? How can I get more? Has anyone found out? My thoughts quickly turned into action and my behavior revealed that which was most important to me. I lived for my pills and they ruled my life.
In the disastrous consequences of such a lifestyle, I went to treatment where I had it out with God. God, I’m sick of this life. I don’t ever want to come back here. Just tell me what to do and I’ll do it. That was the right attitude and the beginning of transformation. God commanded me to get up every day and make a genuine effort to point my life at him instead of myself. As a Christian, I’d previously claimed that God was the most important thing in my life but my behavior hadn’t reflected that. So, in recovery, I needed to put my faith in God before anything else.
This is the kind of commitment that Paul insisted upon in today’s passage. In it, he taught that the Corinthians must, on the first day of the week, set aside their monetary offering, saving it for those in need. They weren’t to give whatever they had left at the end of the week. They were to give first, off the top of their budget.
It’s the same for us. God doesn’t want our leftovers. He wants our best because he made us to live with him in first place in our lives. When we live any other way, we’re off course. It doesn’t even have to be obviously destructive things like drugs that distract us. We can pursue career or family above God. Anything we put in his place becomes our god.
God insists though, that we put him first, above all. We’re not just to claim that he’s the most important thing in our lives. We’re to act like it. Daily, we must take our first and our best to God, pointing our lives at him.
I don’t do it perfectly and I still struggle and fail at times, but in nearly seven years of getting up early every day to point my life at God, I’ve not relapsed, and I’ve not gone back to treatment. God always keeps up his end of the deal. So, today I’ll get up early and put him first. Tomorrow I’ll do the same.