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Priorities

It is amazing to me how often you come across something new in the Bible. There is always a new way of looking at a passage, a new truth waiting to be revealed. I have been going through Ephesians with the kids and morning staff, and I came across Ephesians 4:17. Paul is writing to a group of gentile (non-Jewish) believers. He tells them to no longer live like gentiles. But wait, they are gentiles. That’s like telling me to no longer live like an American. Isn’t that exactly the point, though? The Ephesians were gentiles; and I am, too. I am also an American, and that is not likely to change; but I am a Christian first. I have a US passport; but more importantly, I have a passport for the kingdom of Heaven. Paul tells these people to “throw off” the old nature and put on the new nature, created to be like God. So how should that affect our priorities? How should it affect our time, talents, and treasure? I see so many Christians who seem to be building their own little kingdoms, as though their kingdom can last. As though someday they will finally have all the stuff they need and will then live happily ever after – but it’s a kingdom made of sand. It will all wash away in the coming tide. Jim Elliot said, “He is no fool who gives what he can’t keep to gain what he can’t lose.” As so many of us shelter in place, take the time to examine your priorities. Are you living in fear that your little kingdom might tumble if things don’t get back to normal soon? Are you afraid that you might get sick? Our worry can’t change a single, solitary thing; but our faith, my dear friends, changes everything!   Mike Snider

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