Last week I started four weeks of Monday writings on the topic of Keys to A Blessed Life. Jesus taught us to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matt 6:33). Simply put, place God’s kingdom first, and the Lord will take care of us. When we put God’s kingdom first, then we will be blessed with heavenly treasure, divine rest, and fulfillment as we know Him and make Him known. Now there is a fundamental choice everyone makes when they first come to Christ, and that is placing Him as Lord of our life. Every day after that, a believer’s life either reinforces that decision or denies it. What we will discover is that this is not mostly an issue that is material or physical, but spiritual and God’s Word holds the keys to a genuinely blessed life.
The second key to a blessed life I will explore is that we must have undivided devotion to the Lord. The challenge for every believer is to live above the distractions in life, giving God our undivided heart that results in an abundance of provisions and divine rest. When we give the Lord our undivided devotion out time, talent, treasure, and testimony are used for His glory.
Jesus taught that there is no way to have two masters:
“No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money” (Lk 16:13).
Notice that Jesus does not say “should not serve” but “cannot serve.” Christ-followers must make an either/or choice between serving God and anything else. Jesus even uses something that often masters us, money, as an example. “Money” is personified here in parallel with “God,” indicating how money can so easily take on an idolatrous place in one’s life. It doesn’t say that money is evil, but that it becomes hazardous to our spiritual welfare when it replaces God as master of our life. It would be acceptable to replace the word “money” with anything other than God in this verse. In other words, anything that rivals God in our life as master is harmful to us.
Even after committing to making God greater and ourselves less, we have to fight to live with an undivided devotion to the Lord. Every day the world, the flesh, and the devil tempt us into a divided devotion to God. The Lord has always asked us to reserve an only place for Him, living with undivided devotion to Him. When God institutes the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as a nation, He makes a covenant with them and through Moses shares ten commandments. At the top of the list, God sent a clear message:
“God spoke all these words, saying, ‘I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me’” (Ex 20:1-3).
God requires exclusive loyalty. As the one true God of heaven and earth, He cannot and will not allow for life to work when one’s heart has divided loyalty to Him. Nothing in a believer’s life is to be placed above or even in equal standing with God.
When Jesus was asked to choose one command out of all the commands in the Old Testament as the most important He without hesitation answered:
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mk 12:30).
The most important commandment is to love the Lord your God completely. The same faithful, covenant-keeping God from the Old Testament today asks the objects of His love to love Him with undivided devotion.
God asks for our undivided devotion because He deserves it, but also for our benefit (see: Jer 32:39). When we love God with undivided devotion, we discover a path that blesses us with a fullness of life and blesses others with an example to follow that will also bless them. There is no doubt that we ought to have undivided devotion to the Lord simply because He is worthy of it. However, this does not deny the truth that it is also for our benefit to do so. God knows that for life to work and for us to succeed, we need to be fully focused on one thing, and that thing or person is God. This is why one key to a blessed life is having an undivided devotion to the Lord.
It is wonderful to be found in Christ with each of you. Let us encourage one another to keep the main thing the main thing and devote ourselves fully to God and no one or anything else. This is a key to a blessed life, a life blessed with heavenly treasure, divine rest, and fulfillment as we know Him and make Him known. Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone)!