Matthew 6:33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
When I was a child I used to like to play a game called King of the Hill. In this game, there would be a hill, and the person standing at the top of the hill was the "king." The object of the game was, of course, to be king. To get to stand at the top of the hill and be king, you had to run up the hill at full throttle and push off the current "king." Then your job was to defend your place as others ran up the hill trying to push you off the hill. My favourite part of the game wasn't so much being king of the hill, it was shoving off another kid. As many children's games are, this one was just a tad violent, and I think that's why I liked it. There's a certain thrill in the power of shoving. The only trouble is that I've carried this game over into my spiritual life.
This morning, in my prayer time, I was praying my "to do" list. My prayer went something like this: "Lord, please help me to …", or "Lord, I need …". You can fill in the blank. Asking the Lord for help or to fill our needs is in His will. He wants us to make our requests known to Him. My problem was that I wanted to be king of my own hill, my own life, and direct God in what He should do to serve me. I really hadn't thought about Him being King of Heaven and Earth. All I was interested in was my own little realm of existence. I may think my "hill" is something special, and that my view from the top is far-reaching, but I need to remember Who has given me this hill.
God, I've noticed, doesn't engage in shoving. I think He is a master of nudge. He has never rushed at me, palms forward, to find my weak point, and shoved me off the top of my hill. He is a grown-up and a gentleman. He has often tapped me on the shoulder and reminded me to step down; it is His place at the top of the hill. He is the true King, and I, merely an impostor.
I thank Him for standing at the top of my hill, for being King. He leans over and gently whispers "It's My hill. Remember? You gave it to me." I'm suddenly shamed as I realize that I had run at Him full throttle to try and shove Him off so that I could rule. He only rules by invitation and had stepped aside to let me imagine my own sovereignty. In the tone of my prayer I made Him subject to my bidding rather than making myself His humble servant. I sense His forgiveness as He puts His arms around me and pulls me close to His heart. I look out over the mountains before me and I'm so glad He's interested in little hills.
Prayer: Lord, please forgive me for wanting to rule my own life. Help me to trust You and to relinquish all control to you. Thank you for loving me enough to show me my stubborn pride, and thank you for your forgiveness and acceptance. Amen.