Sunday, 8 January 2017

Pursuing Things? - Sunday 8, January 2017

Pursuing Things? - Sunday 8, January 2017

Memorise: Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven. – Proverbs 23:5

Read: Proverbs 23:4-5 (KJV)

4 Labour not to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom.

5 Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.

Bible in One Year: Matthew 16:17, Isaiah 6:8-7:9

Hymn 7:
HYMN 7: O JESUS, I HAVE PROMISED.
1. O Jesus, I have promised,
To serve Thee to the end;
Be Thou forever near me,
My Master and my Friend;
I shall not fear the battle
If Thou art by my side,
Nor wander from the pathway
If Thou wilt be my Guide.

2. Oh, let me hear Thee speaking,
In accents clear and still,
I dare not trust my judgment:
Thy way shall be my will;
Oh, speak to reassure me,
To hasten or control;
Oh, speak, and make me listen,
Thou Guardian of my soul.

3. O Jesus, Thou hast promised
To all who follow Thee
That where Thou art in glory
There shall Thy servant be;
And Jesus, I have promised
To serve Thee to the end;
Oh, give me grace to follow,
My Master and my Friend.

4. Oh, let me see Thy footmarks,
And in them plant mine own;
My hope to follow duly
Is in Thy strength alone.
Oh, guide me, call me, draw me,
Uphold me to the end;
And then in Heav’n receive me,
My Savior and my Friend.

MESSAGE:

How you start a year is very important, because it can dictate the tone for the year. But more importantly, how the year ends will be determined by the goals you set and your pursuit of them. Some people start a year with little or nothing but end it in a great way; whereas some other people who start the year with quite a lot have little or nothing to show by the end of it. Why is this so? To get the most out of a year, you need to understand the actions and factors at play in determining the course of the year. One of such actors is God.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” - Matthew 6:33

At the onset of every year, most people go about seeking material things. They set material goals and device strategies to accomplish them. Thereafter, they begin a race down the line and shun anything that might affect the realisation of their goals, dreams and aspirations. Yet, at the end of the year, many are still miles apart from the attainment of those goals. Even when they attain their goals, such people are often still left with a great vacuum in their soul that nothing else can fill. This is simply the result of God being left out of the picture in their pursuit of material things.

By its very nature, wealth can be very elusive. Before dissipating so much energy in pursuing wealth like most people will do this year, please consider what the patriarchs of old said about it. King David said that it’s possible to heap up wealth for users and spenders you do not know (Psalms 39:6). The patriarchs also said it is very dangerous to put your trust in their riches you have amassed because you can be disappointed by them when you least expect it. (Psalm 62:10, Proverbs 11:28). The preacher in Proverbs 23:5 further adds that riches can suddenly develop wings and take flight from where you think you have kept them securely. Where do they fly to? They fly towards heaven, back to God their original owner. For these reasons, you must put God at the centre of all your pursuits this year so that they can be meaningful. If you choose to seek and pursue after God, you will get the material things of this world with very little effort. This year, be wise! Don’t waste your time and effort pursuing things that should be pursuing you.

Key Point: When you run after material things at the expense of a thriving relationship with God, you tell Him to His face that He is not important in your life.