Simple needs make life really complicated

Today’s verse is Matthew 6:33.

 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

Seems pretty simple, doesn’t it? Well, it’s probably supposed to be simple, but we make it complicated. I know when I look at my life, there’s a part of me that thinks there’s really just too much that God has to provide for me and I shouldn’t be asking for that much. So I think I need to do it for myself.

I need money to pay my bills. I need clothes to wear to work so I can make money to pay for my bills. I need food to eat, specifically good, healthy food so I will be able to continue wearing the clothes I bought. I need gasoline for my car. Ha. And in 5,000 more miles I’m going to need a new set of brakes and four new tires too. I need allergy meds so I don’t get sick, which means I need insurance. My daily needs are no different from anyone else’s, so just like I sometimes feel like I can’t provide all these things for myself, I’m sure other people must feel the same way.

So why don’t we think that God can provide all these things for us? I know why I hesitate. I’m stubborn. I want to do things myself, provide for myself, not have to rely on anyone ever — even God.

And I guess the real question is whether or not I actually need the things I think I need. Obviously, some of the needs I listed up there are definite, but when you get right down to it, what’s more important — eating a salad or seeking God? Having gasoline to go somewhere or knowing God? Wearing a brand new shirt or having a conversation with God?

And see, I’m foolish enough somedays to think there’s a choice between those things. And there doesn’t have to be. Because I can seek God while I eat a salad and I can know God while I’m driving somewhere and I can wear a brand new shirt while I have a conversation with God. But the point is, those things shouldn’t be what I’m seeking first.

God needs to be the priority in my life. Not things. Not stuff. Not food. Not position or rank or authority.

I need God. Nothing else.

And if I can wrap my head around that and actually live like that, He will take care of everything else. He’ll provide me with money. He’ll provide me with clothes. He’ll provide me with food and gasoline for my car. He’ll provide me with the things I need to live . . . . and many times He’ll give me too much. And I know He even gives me things I want too and not just the things I need.

I love the Amplified Version’s spin on this verse too.

33But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.

Here’s the thing. This verse is part of a larger sermon Christ delivered in the Book of Matthew. This verse comes along right after Christ was telling people not to worry.

Those of us who follow Christ don’t need to be controlled by thoughts of the material possessions we need. In this same set of verses, Christ tells people to look at the birds and the flowers. Birds have enough to eat, and flowers are beautiful in their design without having to work to clothe themselves. And in the same way, God will provide for us. Because if God takes care of creations so insignificant as birds and flowers, He’ll definitely take care of us — creations designed just like Him.

God is all I need. And the only thing my life needs is to reflect His goodness, a life that both knows and does the right thing all the time. And everything extraneous will be given to me.

And I know all that. The hard part is living it.

The hard part is looking at the stack of bills on my table, wondering how I’m going to budget for it. The hard part is shopping at a grocery store where all the food prices have gone through the roof. The hard part is trying to make ends meet when I’ve done all I can and the ends still aren’t meeting. The hard part is taking God at His Word and not working myself to death to provide things for myself and others that He would have given us anyway if I had just asked.

Need God.

Do the right thing.

God’s got us covered.