Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.Matthew 6:33 (NLT)
The American Dream has been a thing for over 200 years. The concept is quite simple. Live a good life. Get a spouse. Buy a house. Have some kids. Work a good job. Retire. Travel. Play with grandkids. Ya know, everything is perfect! This is the premise on which so many dreams are born. Of course there are millions of variations on this (no kids, for example), but the idea is the same. Live a perfect life, full of wonderful experiences and memories.
Unfortunately, though Hollywood may show this to be true, this world doesn’t allow us to experience that perfection. Life is complicated and messy. It turns out money only goes so far in helping with our dreams. Families are complicated. Jobs come and go. Housing prices rise and fall. Death happens. Pain happens. Misery happens. The perfect world that we all hope for isn’t a reality. So, we make institutions filled with people to make decisions to guide our country into a “perfect union.” Nope. That ain’t working either. In fact, us humans aren’t too good at this perfection thing.
Nearly 2,000 years ago, the disciples of Jesus were hoping God would make the world perfect when Jesus arrived. That, at that moment, Jesus would become King of the Earth, would make all decisions, and everything would be wonderful. But, they didn’t understand. Jesus didn’t come to fix our broken system. Jesus came to save us from it. Instead, He created a new way to an old Kingdom. The Kingdom of God, which is perfect in every way.
When we seek after the Kingdom of God, as our verse today states, Jesus will “give you everything you need.” Notice that last word: need. We don’t get all of our wants and desires fulfilled. Our needs are met; our innate, eternal needs.
So, what are these needs? Everlasting, perfect love. Total grace and forgiveness. Peace and hope. The removal of shame and guilt. And a million other awesome things.
So, when Jesus says, “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else,” He is saying to rise above the American Dream. Instead, we need to seek after Him, and His Kingdom. In Him we will find all that we need.