Daily Devotional



Maybe Ricky Bobby's Dad had it Right

Maybe Ricky Bobby's Dad had it Right

               If you are a fan of NASCAR, stupid comedic films, or Will Farrell, chances are you remember the infamous character Ricky Bobby of the 2006 film "Talladega Nights". Despite his lack of any intelligence and his terrible, blasphemous, prayer habits, Ricky was driven to succeed by the last words his absentee father said to him before abandoning him, "If you ain't first, you're last". This mantra kept Ricky determined and focused on only one goal, being in first place.

What if the believer were to take this approach to living? It is already a true statement, as Hudson Taylor famously said, "if Christ is not Lord of all, He is not Lord at all". Or as Christ, himself, said, "Seek first the kingdom of God°". The truth is our God is above all and the creator of all. There is nothing in all creation that can rightfully supplant Him from his transcendent and elevated position. And yet, we constantly denigrate His position in our lives by focusing on lesser things. Mankind has created an infinite number of things to seek ahead of the Christ, His kingdom, and His righteousness. These things are not in and of themselves evil, but we mistake their value when we rank their importance ahead of knowing Christ and furthering His kingdom on earth. When asked what was the greatest commandment, Christ responded, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." Paul said he counted all the things in his life as garbage when compared to knowing Christ. Jesus told two parables, The Treasure in the Field, and the Pearl of Great Price, in both of which he compares the Kingdom to an object worth selling all your worldly possessions in order to obtain.

The message of scripture is clear. God is a jealous God, and the reason why jealousy for us is sin, but it is not so for Him is this, everything is rightfully His to begin with. He is rightfully jealous and justifiably angry when we take the energy, emotion, care, and worship rightfully due to Him and devote it to created things; when we move Him from first to lesser than. If He's not first, He's last. What can we be driven to achieve for the kingdom if we were wholly devoted to the notion that all that matters is making Christ first?

 

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Maybe Ricky Bobby's Dad had it Right

Maybe Ricky Bobby's Dad had it Right

               If you are a fan of NASCAR, stupid comedic films, or Will Farrell, chances are you remember the infamous character Ricky Bobby of the 2006 film "Talladega Nights". Despite his lack of any intelligence and his terrible, blasphemous, prayer habits, Ricky was driven to succeed by the last words his absentee father said to him before abandoning him, "If you ain't first, you're last". This mantra kept Ricky determined and focused on only one goal, being in first place.

What if the believer were to take this approach to living? It is already a true statement, as Hudson Taylor famously said, "if Christ is not Lord of all, He is not Lord at all". Or as Christ, himself, said, "Seek first the kingdom of God°". The truth is our God is above all and the creator of all. There is nothing in all creation that can rightfully supplant Him from his transcendent and elevated position. And yet, we constantly denigrate His position in our lives by focusing on lesser things. Mankind has created an infinite number of things to seek ahead of the Christ, His kingdom, and His righteousness. These things are not in and of themselves evil, but we mistake their value when we rank their importance ahead of knowing Christ and furthering His kingdom on earth. When asked what was the greatest commandment, Christ responded, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." Paul said he counted all the things in his life as garbage when compared to knowing Christ. Jesus told two parables, The Treasure in the Field, and the Pearl of Great Price, in both of which he compares the Kingdom to an object worth selling all your worldly possessions in order to obtain.

The message of scripture is clear. God is a jealous God, and the reason why jealousy for us is sin, but it is not so for Him is this, everything is rightfully His to begin with. He is rightfully jealous and justifiably angry when we take the energy, emotion, care, and worship rightfully due to Him and devote it to created things; when we move Him from first to lesser than. If He's not first, He's last. What can we be driven to achieve for the kingdom if we were wholly devoted to the notion that all that matters is making Christ first?

 

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