Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Preaching "Don't Worry" after facing the Board of Ordained Ministry

So God has quite the sense of humor. I have been doing a series through the Sermon on the Mount on Sunday mornings--interrupted here and there by a special speaker. The Sunday after I meet with the Board of Ordination--my scheduled section of the Sermon was on Matthew 6: 17-34--you know, the section about worrying and seeking first the Kingdom of God. After I have spent the past few months wrestling with the stress and anxiety of ordination, I get to preach "don't worry."
So it was an honest discussion--not quite a sermon. It didn't feel right to "preach" this sermon since I myself had been anxious at times. After months of wrestling with this passage and failing at times, here are my thoughts on "seek first the Kingdom."
1. I have always interpreted "seeking first the Kingdom of God" as spending alone time with God--devotions, meditation, prayer, Scripture reading,etc. I still get anxious. I still worry. Do I need more alone time? or do is there more to seeking God's Kingdom? I concluded there is more than personal devotions involved in seeking God's Kingdom.
2. Seeking God's Kingdom is seeing in every event or circumstance which causes anxiety the opportunity to experience God. My faith is being pushed to the edge. God promises to meet me there. When I am anxious, seeking the Kingdom means I will believe God and look to see God's provision in the midst of the circumstance.
3. Seeking God's Kingdom means every circumstance is an opportunity for me to join Christ's redemptive work. How can I reflect the Kingdom of God in the midst of this circumstance?
So what does it look like for you to seek the Kingdom of God first?

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