Leftovers

Nearly everything tastes better the first time it is served. Creative cooks can sometimes disguise leftovers and make them seem new. I am not one of those cooks. Too often my leftovers outlive their life in small Tupperware dishes in that get shoved to the back of the refrigerator until all hope is lost. My intentions are good, but the follow through is complicated. I end up with all kinds of mismatched food that doesn’t fit together to form a real meal. Too often it is wasted and ends up in the trash.

There are so many things competing for my attention and time and effort that are immediately in my path. There seems to be no end of things that need to be put away or cleaned or “handled”. And when I come to the end of my time or my energy, unseen things have been left undone. My day too often ends with loose ends and good intentions that got shoved to the back of my schedule and are never fulfilled or accomplished.

Too often we treat God just like that. The tyranny of our schedule or the immediate demands for our attention and action crowd him out. He requires that our offerings to him be our “first fruits”. He wants us to “seek first” his presence and kingdom; only then will all other blessings be added to us. Jesus summed up all the laws with only two: the first was to Love God. If we wait to spend our “leftover” time each day with him, we too often find that we bury him behind the tangible demands of our day. He ends up somewhere near the back of our priorities, even when he began at the front of our good intentions.

God will bless and multiply whatever we bring to him. When we begin by offering God our best, he will abundantly bless the time and energy and money and effort that we give him. Bowing to the immediate demands on our time and energy and giving God only what we have left over seems so much easier in the moment, but we end up stressed and drained and empty. God will fill whatever we offer to him, but the tiny “Tupperware” size portion that is left over after the world is finished with us will not leave us filled.

May we begin each day by offering him our all and our best, and may we spend our days aware of his presence and filled with his power.

Matt 6:33 Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

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