FIRST Grade

FIRST Grade

Back to school? No. Homework assignment? Maybe. What are we talking about, Commander Kellie? Keep reading, Superkid.

 

Let’s talk about firsts. Dictionary.com defines FIRST:

 

  • Before all others or anything else in time, order or rank
  • Before some other thing, event
  • The first part; first member of a series
  • In baseball, first base

 

Superkid, I want you to grade yourself on how YOU are doing with your FIRSTS. Let’s look at the list above, one at a time. I’ll ask the questions and you answer. Be honest with yourself and with the Lord! Not only does He know EXACTLY what’s going on in your heart, He can help YOU see it, if you ask Him. So, if you don’t know, ask the TEACHER!

 

Where have I positioned God in my life; first, before all others?

In Matthew 19:20-21 (The Passion Translation) a rich young man came to Jesus asking what he must do to have eternal life. He told Jesus, “I always keep God’s rules” but Jesus gave him an instruction that showed the man’s true heart and priorities. Jesus said, “Go and sell what you have and give it to the poor. Then you’ll have your treasure in heaven.” He thought Jesus didn’t want him to be rich, but Jesus was just answering his question. If he wanted eternal life, he needed to refocus his love on the Father, to treasure the things of God instead of money and possessions. But he loved money so much he went away angry, not realizing Jesus had offered him the best! “Come follow Me,” Jesus said. The rich young leader should have said, “Really, Jesus? That’s awesome, thank You!” Matthew 6:33 puts it perfectly: “But first, be concerned about his kingdom and what has his approval. Then all these things will be provided for you” (TPT).

 

Jesus told the disciples that those who put Him first will be repaid a hundred times over AND have eternal life. If you put yourself first, you’ll end up last. Those who put Jesus first and leave themselves last, will end up FIRST! In Acts 5:29, Peter and the other apostles were arrested and told to stop speaking about Jesus but they replied, “We must listen and obey God more than pleasing religious leaders” (TPT). The rich young ruler missed it, but not Peter! He gets an A+! So, how about it, Superkid? Are you putting God first?

 

Is Jesus the first One you think about before you get up?

Psalm 119:147 (New Living Translation) says, “I rise early, before the sun is up; I cry out for help and put my hope in your words.”

 

When I wake up, I talk to Jesus out loud. He wants to be your first thought every day. Why? Because He loves you! He already has your day planned out. When you set your love and attention on Him first, it’s easier to trust and listen to Him all day! That would have helped the rich young ruler. He was thinking about living forever when he could have been REALLY living by following Jesus! Not to keep picking on this guy, but he really missed it! When you make Jesus your first thought every day, you won’t miss it! He will make you the best at what He’s called you to be. We can all do better at this, Superkid. I challenge you to put Jesus first in your day. If you already do, go deeper! I’m going to do the same!

 

How do you handle FIRSTS?

The first time you go off the high dive, the first day of school, the first time you speak in front of people, the first time the Lord prompts you to tell someone about Jesus. This is important. Your answer lets you know where your trust level is with God. The Lord is always leading us into new and exciting adventures. When you do what He tells you to do, there is always something great ahead. You may feel fear when these firsts come up (OK, the high dive fear was a real thing for me when I was a kid.) and you may want to back away from it, but stop! Take authority over fear, Superkid. Second Timothy 1:7 (TPT) gives us an important truth to stand on: “For God will never give you the spirit of cowardly fear, but the Holy Spirit who gives you mighty power, love, and sound judgment!”

 

Say this, “Firsts don’t bother me! I am filled with Jesus, not fear!”

 

Focusing on God in us FIRST will keep us from fearing people, situations and the things that lie ahead. It all comes down to His love. We can put Him first because He put us FIRST! We love Him because He loved us FIRST!

 

So how did you do? The most amazing thing about these firsts is that you get seconds—second tries! As you begin to put Him first, you can even ask Him to remind you and He will. He will help and correct you until you can say, “I’ve passed first grade!” And the Father ALWAYS gives an A+. He looks at you and He sees Jesus. Whew! Great job, Superkid. You passed!

 

Wait! What about baseball and what does that have to do with this anyway?

 

Stay Tuned…

 

Commander Kellie

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