Joyce Meyer - Keeping God First
Now, at first the title of my message was "Put God first," but something about it was bothering me. And this morning I thought, no, I'm gonna change it to, "Keeping God first." You know why? How many times do we decide to put God first but then the keeping Him first becomes an issue because, in case you haven't noticed, the world is full of things to distract us.
I'm sure you've experienced you make a decision that you're going to pray every morning, and study the Word before you do anything else. And man, all of a sudden, it's nighttime and you don't even know what happened but that plan you made didn't work out.
And so, more than anything, now, I want you to listen to me, more than anything, the devil will fight you about keeping God first in your time, in your finances, and in many, many, and so, I feel like the Lord wants me to talk to you this morning about keeping God first. And for some of you, it may require making some adjustments.
You see, here's the thing that you don't want to do. I found myself, many years ago, trying so hard to work God into my schedule. And finally one day the Lord said, "Why don't you just work your schedule around Me." So, are you trying to find a place to put God into your schedule or would you be willing today to say, "God, from now on, You're gonna be first and I don't care what else has to go"? "I don't care what else has to go or what I have to change, what I have to make an adjustment in, I want to keep You first in my life in everything."
Let me tell ya, being a christian just does not work out right if God is a sideline in your life. And, you know, that's probably not the case with a lot of you because you wouldn't have taken the trouble to come out here on a Saturday morning.
But I'm not just talking to you today. We're talking to millions of people all over the world through this wonderful technology today that we have called television. And I'm well aware that there are people who think you accidentally turned the program on, but it can be a life-changing moment for you today.
There are also probably millions of people that I refer to, like I used to refer to myself, as a religious person. Well, Jesus didn't die so we could have a religion. He died so we can have a deep, intimate, personal relationship with Him through Christ.
We need to learn how to do life with God. He doesn't want to just be part of your Sunday morning. He wants to be welcomed into and be a vital part of everything that you do.
Okay then, millions of people believe in Jesus and go to church on Sunday, but God is not first in their life. And I want to tell ya that He is a jealous God. He's jealous of you. He puts you first in His life. Do you know that? Every single one of you is first in God's thoughts.
You say, "Well, how can we all be first?" Because God is God and He can do that. And so, everything I'm saying today is not just to a bunch of people. It's to individuals. And once Jesus died on the cross an ascended on high, He sent the Holy Spirit who can be everywhere all the time with every person.
So, God is omnipresent. He's here today but He's also in China, and Africa, and India, and Asia and He can speak something different to every one of you all at the same time.
People will come to these conferences and tell me things they got out of it and I don't even remember saying that. But see, God can speak to you. And I want you to understand this today, you are on God's mind all the time. You are on God's mind all the time. He's always thinking about you.
We could not even count the thoughts that God has toward us. They would be like little grains of sand on the beach. Before you ever arrived on planet earth, God made a plan for every single day of your life. He won't force you to walk in it, but He would like you to walk in it. He would like to guide you and lead you through life and literally, let me say it again, be involved in everything you do. In every decision you make, God wants to be part of it.
That's what Jesus died for us to have, not just believe a certain doctrine, join a certain group, and go to church once a week, and hope we go to heaven when we die. That's pretty sad if that's all being a Christian means to us.
So, I want to talk to you for a moment about the importance of remembering the things that God has done for you. There's some great warnings in the Bible about the dangers of forgetting God. And really, exactly what's wrong with our nation right now is not a money problem, it's a moral problem. If the morals are right, the money will be there.
And I don't care how many panels of experts they put together to study the problems, they are not gonna find the answers because the answer is simply repent of your sins and return to God. And to be honest, in most of our lives, that's the bottom line answer. Quit trying to do what you want to do and start doing what I'm asking you to do.
America was built on the foundational principles of the Word of God. All of our laws are built on the Word of God. And you cannot remove God from a nation that was built on God and expect the nation to last and to work.
Israel did that over and over and over and over. And God is gracious and He always received them back, but they would do the same dumb thing again and again and every time they did, they had war, they had famine, they had all kinds of problems in their life.
I don't know why anybody would not be able to see what is going on. And I think one of the things we need to pray is that the blind will see and the deaf will hear. And I'm not talking physically. I'm talking about the blindness that's on our leaders that prevents them from seeing what the real problem is.
All you have to do is look back to when they took the ten commandments off the walls in the schools. Well, you know, we can all sit and say, "Well, I don't know what to do. I don't know what to do." Well, you know, we're not responsible for what everybody does. What we are responsible for what we do. Amen?
I read this morning about a group of mothers, I can't remember exactly where it was so I won't tell it wrong, but they started a Jesus lunch off campus in a park near by a school. And the kids go to McDonald's. and nobody cares. School don't get involved in that. Government doesn't get involved if you want to go eat at McDonald's.
Well, these mothers started a nice home-cooked lunch for any student who wanted to come and eat lunch there. And they present a simple message of Christianity and they feed the kids. Well, there's now kids voluntarily coming to this. So, now they're getting threatened. They're being told they have to stop it, that they can't do it. And thank God these women are fighting and they've gotten a lawyer that will help them fight.
So, we cannot just kind of lay down under this and say, "I don't know what to do." I mean, we need to get stirred up and say, "We have got a right to talk about God as much as we want to talk about God."
Now, I agree that this is a free country and we can't make people believe anything. And I don't personally think we should try to push off on anybody what we believe but we should not let them take away what we believe.
To be honest, it seems like today everybody's got rights but Christians. But everything that's going on in this country and many other countries around the world is because they have forgotten God. Boy, we sure need God when we're desperate. Well, you know, we can't just go to God when we're desperate, that's not a walk with God.