|Make a sincere effort to seek the kingdom of God|
Rev. Ruby Ann Darling
Published: Apr 19, 2012
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. — St. Matthew 6:33.
Our lesson text today is a very familiar verse of scripture that can be quoted by many. While being able to roll it off the tongue, how many have taken it to be the benchmark of success? How many have used it as the basic tenet of faith in training up their children in the way they should go? As a matter of fact, how many really believe this to be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?
The violent happenings in our land, especially among the youth is a loud call of national distress. No amount of foreign investment can offset the tragic loss of male life. When the quality of life is diminished among young men, the hope of the future is bleak.
Barely do I get written responses from my weekly messages, but does that mean I should not continue with the witness and the message? Indeed not! If the message is despised and the messenger rejected, then the consequences of not receiving will allow sorrow to roll like billowing seas.
Thinking of the consequences of judgment and punishment at the last day, of losing heaven and going to hell: nor even of the sorrow and loss we may perhaps bring in some future time upon others by our past misdoing, is not sufficient. That kind of observation will not bring the kingdom to us or to others. Here is the cure.
We must return to our Father at once and tell Him of our sorrow and ask for His gracious face to look upon us again, and for His help and guidance to put the wrong right, and to let us be His faithful servants again and the children of His love. And this He will certainly allow. For when we call Him our Father we mean that which is true. He really is our Father and what He desires is just for us to come back to Him. He will not keep us waiting for His forgiveness, but is already ready to welcome us.
But why is it that we find or make it difficult to trust Him so simply. Our Lord Jesus came and lived and taught and died for us just that we might know Him and trust Him when our hearts fail. Come to me He said. Come with me and I will bring you to our Father, your Father and mine. That is why we end our prayers with “Through Jesus Christ our Lord” or “For Jesus Christ’s sake” — He is our mediator.
Can we find the kingdom of God via Google, or through treasure hunts, a voyage around the world, archeological discovery, even by having national primaries and elections? Indeed not. The Bible says that the Kingdom of God is within you or among you.
Trying to play upon words whether it is within or among, matters little. What matters is that the kingdom is already here in our midst only to be recognized within our hearts, in the quiet loving thoughts which no disturbance outside can destroy. Sometimes our minds within us are themselves disturbed, as mine was a few days ago. It is at this time we can best find the kingdom — by looking at others, at God’s mercies operating around us. At the good examples others afford us. At the unexpected undiscovered kindnesses shown us by others, or even by the richness of a Sunday morning church service.
Our business is not to take the measure of our own progress. We are sent here to stick to the precept and to do right, not to plan our course and other peoples but to do good. A good conscience is a conscience open toward God, not an easily satisfied conscience. A broken contrite heart is the sacrifice. Those who are most conscious of wrong within, who confess most frequently to failure, are asking the most honest search for the kingdom — the kingdom in which we build and are built by God’s righteousness not our own.
Today, make a sincere effort to seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness. The treasure of such a divine search would be all that your heart should desire.
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