Priority One

Saturday, August 11, 2018
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "My Saviour's Love"1 (Lyrics)

Like many people, I have health goals: to walk daily, avoid refined sugar, get enough sleep. This month, I have been able to exercise every day. I've really enjoyed seeing the change of season come to the flora in my area, breathing in God's beautiful creation each day, and marvelling in it. It's been rewarding to feel my body getting healthier and stronger. I'm really proud of myself!

But other goals — morning devotions, daily prayer, writing daily, even healthy food choices — have been neglected. "It seems to take all my energy to do just one of the things that I really want to do!" I lamented to a friend. As I said those words, the following verse came to mind:

Matthew 6:24 – No one can serve two masters. 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 both God and Money. (NIV)

Does that mean that I'm off the hook for dealing with all but one bad habit at a time, since God tells me here that I can't expect myself to focus on two things at once? No! But it does mean that I need to ask myself who or what I am serving with my goals and to make sure that my relationship with God is my main focus.

I know that God wants me to live a healthy life and to have a healthy physical body, a temple for Him, so that I can serve Him more fully. But when I really look at why I've been able to get out to exercise every day, I'm embarrassed to admit that it's not God but vanity that's got me out the door — vanity and an app on my phone that gives me free reward points for the number of steps that I take each day.

I've created a second master, another master which has taken priority and pulled me away from my relationship with God. I haven't reached the point where I despise God, like today's Scripture describes, but I have certainly been neglecting Him by not doing the things daily that build our relationship. As I focused on health first, I have been walking further and further from God.

"What would happen if I placed God back as my Priority One?" I asked myself. I meditated upon that this morning as I walked, instead of listening to a podcast or music. So, each day, I turn my walk and my day back over to God, to fill and to use as He sees fit. All my goals, including my health goals, need to be motivated by being the best person that I can be to serve God to the best of my ability.

So, in our daily walk, let's ask God to help us to set all our goals, health or otherwise, with His purpose for our lives at the centre of each.

Prayer: Dear God, we confess that we get distracted by this world and by our own ideas and goals, and allow You to get bumped to second place. You are the only Master that we want to serve. Show us the other masters that we've allowed into our lives, and give us the strength to put You back into Priority One in our lives. Amen.

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About the author:

Katherine Bell <>
Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Love it!

    Amen, Katherine.

    I’m right there with you!

    I just wrote about this as well. I think God is trying to tell us something.

    Excellent post that will resonate with many, Katherine. God bless you!

    Amen Katherine.

    Excellent insight, on letting Jesus lead in all things.

    Very good.
    Please report back in 6 months to let us know how it is going.

    Thanks for the reminder today to keep God as priority one in our lives. I could definitely relate as I have always struggled with my weight. Blessings.

    Thank you for the reminder that there is a wonderful opportunity to spend time with our Lord and marvel at His works as we enjoy time simply walking outside

    A big Amen to that message and prayer Katherine. Thank you.
    I needed to hear that too.

    No pun intended, but this is great food for thought!!! We have to continue to surrender to Him daily, don’t we??
    Blessings on you as you strive to be your very best in Him!!

    Well my dear, this is a wow for me. I actually do not walk with music in my ears, as I want to be aware of surroundings for my own safety, nor do I walk for my fitness. I walk for my dog’s health. But my goodness this really speaks to me.

    Hello Katherine. I’m excited when I see where you are.
    Thank you for your devotional. My husband was a Presbyterian minister and how proud I am of him and how greatly used he was.

    Hi Katherine,
    Just finished reading your devotional, “Priority One.”
    Your humor made me chuckle. As for neglecting God, I really don’t think you need worry about that, sounds like He’s woven into your very being.
    Thanks for writing good job, and God bless you!

    Dear Katherine Bell,
    I pray with :
    You are the only Master that we want to serve. Show us the other masters that we’ve allowed into our lives and give us the strength to put You back into Priority One in our lives. Amen.
    God so loved the earth that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but shall have everlasting life… life more abundantly.

    Hi Katherine,
    It is indeed hard to keep the Lord as number 1 in our lives all day, every day. There are so many things which we need to do on a daily basis, that to be honest I think we all fail at times. This morning my broken down dehumidifier was my main priority, for a while at least.
    Thank you for reminding me about “Priority One.”

    Dear Katherine:
    I am sure God is proud of you too for getting into better shape. I am struggling with is as well.
    I think I have a solution for you. Every morning I read my Bible with an amazing commentary for each section. I use BIOY (Bible in one Year) by Nicky Gumble.
    This is my second year of reading the full Bible and I cannot tell you how much I enjoy it every day.
    May He bless you enormously.

    Thank you Katherine. Another very thoughtful and helpful devotion.

    Dear Katherine,
    Thank you so much for a wonderful devotional. I’m sure many of us walk for personal gain as you mentioned but you have given us a great motivation to keep the LORD first as we exercise and live our daily lives.

    Thanks for another great devotional Katherine.

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