The First and Best

“I will require your . . firstfruits and choicest of contributions.” Ezekiel 20:40 Amplified

“What would otherwise be ordinary is sacred when your best is first dedicated to God.”

My thoughts today are about the “first and best.”

The most liberating thing you will ever do is the decision to always give your first and best to God, and others. That single principle is counter-intuitive – going against everything that comes naturally to you. Self-centeredness inclines any person to reserve the first and best for themselves, and then give some portion to God and others out of what’s left. Second best is never good enough for a proper recognition of a life that is devoted to God, and thankful for His gifts and blessings.

The Bible teaches the principle of firstfruits as His command, not your option. “I will require your first . . and choicest of contributions . . the best of all firstfruits and of all your special gifts . . so that a blessing may rest on your household.” Ezekiel 20:40 Amplified/44:30 NIV. Without exception, the firstfruits were more than just the first; God asks for the first of the first, and the best of the first. Life never  works as it should until you decide to put God first and give Him your best. No matter how good, giving second best is never good enough.

God knows what you must learn: put God first in your life, and you will experience the best that He wants you to receive. “Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything your land produces (firstfruits of all your increase/NKJV). Then He will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with the finest wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10 NLT. Simply stated, you will have enough today and reserves (barns) and satisfaction (wine va ts) for tomorrow. What would otherwise be ordinary is sacred when your best is first dedicated to God.

When God is not given the first, or you withhold your best from Him, then God is not first in your heart nor the center of your life. When your calendar is first submitted to God, you will always have enough time to do what you want and should. Abilities joyfully offered in service to God and others will result in the reward they are meant to bring you. Days you begin with God are more productive than they would have been. Choices that are submitted to God for direction will be more wise than they might have been without His counsel. Your life can be all that God intends; put God first in all you do, with all you have. Here’s the secret to Jesus’ life: “I do always the things that please (the Father).” John 8:29 NKJV.

Imagine your joy at the end of a day when you know you have truly pleased the Father. Don’t you think that would be the grandest of days and height of your satisfaction? Is it possible? Most certainly! “Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead . . make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to Whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21 NKJV. God alone makes such a life possible, when you put Him first in everything.

My prayer for you today is that you give God your best always.