I picked up a copy of Oswald Chambers book “My Utmost for His Highest” a couple of months ago. I don’t quite get to reading every daily entry, but I’ve been taking in at least 3-5 a week.
This book will be my constant companion throughout my life. Something I can pick up on a whim or devote daily attention to and find some perspective of scripture to meditate on. I’ve got the updated edition, which I believe is a bit of an easier read.
The original edition was published in 1935, nearly two decades after Oswald Chambers death. So I’m figuring that the original was written in a more formal language, perhaps comparable to the King James Version of the bible – with beautiful meaning and worthy of seeking the message, but not at all like our spoken word today and difficult to understand.
I’ll have to get my eyes on the original one day and discover the authors expression, just like I read the KJV every now and again and am actually finding it relatable!
Well, today’s entry in My Utmost for His Highest (May 31) is what I want to share. It’s titled, Put God First. If you have heard the preaching at our church, you’re already well connected to the teaching of forgiveness and not letting the bitterness get in your heart.
Easy to hear. Easy to know that is the better way, especially for us, but also for the other person and anyone that happens to be around. And also easy to find many instances in scripture to back this up.
Not as easy to do. Whether toward a loved one that has hurt, rejected, disappointed or insulted us, or someone we hardly know that has ripped us off, verbally accosted us or wronged us in a variety of ways.
I’m hoping God’s spirit will help to make this even more real to me as I write out the excerpt and more real to you as you read:
“Jesus did not commit Himself to them…for He know what was in man.” ~ John 2:24-25
Put Trust in God First. Our Lord never put His trust in any person. Yet He was never suspicious, never bitter, and never lost hope for anyone, because He put His trust in God first. He trusted absolutely in what God’s grace could do for others. If I put my trust in human beings first, the end result will be my despair and hopelessness toward everyone. I will become bitter because I have insisted that people be what no person can ever be — absolutely perfect and right. Never trust anything in yourself or in anyone else, except the grace of God.
Put God’s Will First. “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God” (Hebrews 10:9).
A person’s obedience is to what he sees to be a need — our Lord’s obedience was to the will of His Father. The rallying cry today is, “We must get to work! The heathen are dying without God. We must go and tell them about Him.” But we must first make sure that God’s ‘needs’ and His will in us personally are being met. Jesus said, “Tarry…until you are endued with power from on high” (Luke 24:49). The purpose of our Christian training is to get us into the right relationship to the ‘needs’ of God and His will. Once God’s ‘needs’ in us have been met, He will open the way for us to accomplish His will, meeting His ‘needs’ elsewhere.
Put God’s Son First. “Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me” (Matthew 18:5)
God came as a baby, giving and entrusting Himself to me. He expects my personal life to be a ‘Bethlehem’. Am I allowing my natural life to be slowly transformed by the indwelling life of the Son of God? God’s ultimate purpose is that his Son might be exhibited in me.