Many times we tell the Lord, “Lord Jesus, I give You the first place in my life! You are the Lord!” Also, we call on His name, Lord Jesus! But have you ever wondered what does it mean to give the Lord the preeminence, the first place, in a practical way in your life? Recently I have been impressed with this sharing in the 2011 winter training on the Crystallization-Study of the Psalms(2), message 1 – there are at least 12 ways we can give the Lord the first place in us in a practical way (also mentioned via, 12 ways to give Christ the first place in the new year, and, The Need for Christ as Our Unique Portion and Desire to Be Properly Appreciated and Exalted by Us).
1. To give the Lord the first place in our life means to love Him with the first love, the best love, to be constrained with His love, and regard Him as everything in our life. Rev. 2:4 speaks of not leaving our first love. 2 Cor. 5:14-15 tells us that the love of Christ constrains us to no longer live to ourselves. In Mark 12:30 God commands us to love Him with our whole heart, soul, mind, and strength. Psa. 73:25-26 says that we have no one in heaven and on earth besides the Lord.
We may have loved other things, persons, matters, etc and considered them as “everything to us”, but now we love the Lord with the first love and we regard God as our everything! We should consider His love and our love for Him to be forever fresh! His love for us refreshes us, and our love for Him refreshes the Lord. Lord, show me Your love, that I might love You with Your love and with a fresh, new, sevenfold intensified love!
2. To give the Lord the first place in our life practically means to repent and do the first works. Rev. 2:5 warns us that if we don’t repent and do the first works, the Lord will remove the lampstand. These works issue from our first love for the Lord – they are a work issuing from a heart filled with zeal for the Lord’s love, and this is precious in the Lord’s eyes. We love the Lord so much that we just do the first works – and they come out of our zeal, our love for Him!
In that day, when we will stand before God at His judgement seat, He will appreciate how much of what we have done out of love for Him. Only those things we do motivated by our love for the Lord are considered gold, silver, and precious stones. If we don’t do these works, the Lord will take the lampstand! Whatever we do in the church life, we need to love the Lord and do the first works – and we will be a corporate expression of the Triune God everywhere on the earth as the golden lampstands!
3. To give the Lord the first place in our life means to take Him as the fountain of living waters! Jer. 2:13 says that it is an evil thing in the eyes of God to forsake Him as the fountain of living waters and to hew out for ourselves cisterns (broken cisterns) which hold no water. Every day we come to the Lord to drink Him as the fountain of living waters! God’s intention in His economy is to be the fountain, the source, of living waters to us to dispense Himself into His chosen people as their enjoyment and everything! The goal of this dispensing is to produce the house of God, the church, His fulness, His expression!
4. To give the Lord the first place in our life practically means to eat Him as the tree of life! See Rev. 2:7 and note 6 – eating the tree of life, that is, enjoying Christ as our life supply, should be the primary matter in the church life. Right now in the church life the primary matter is eating Christ as the tree of life! This is the way to give Him the preeminence in all things. The content of the church life depends on our enjoyment of Christ – the more we enjoy Him, the richer the content will be. To enjoy Christ requires that we love Him with our first love. If we don’t love Him, we will lose our enjoyment and we will lose the lampstand! By loving the Lord with the first love and by enjoying the Lord as the tree of life we will be the testimony of the Lord as the golden lampstand!
5. To give the Lord the first place in our life is to continually come to Him to contact Him, receive Him, and enjoy Him. Isa. 57:20 and note 1 tells us that if we don’t enjoy the Lord we are like the tossed sea, like mud, and what comes out of our being is mire and mud. The evil condition of the wicked is that they do not come to eat and enjoy the Lord – they do MANY THINGS but they don’t contact the Lord to take Him in, enjoy Him, receive Him, and taste Him! Nothing is more evil in the sight of God than our not enjoying Him!
6. To give the Lord the first place in our life means that we take Christ as our centrality (our holding center) and our universality (our everything). Col. 1:17 says that all things cohere in him – all the planets, stars, galaxies, etc, are held together by Christ. Our personal universe is held together by Christ, and we need to take Him as our center, our hub. If not, our personal universe falls apart! Take Him as the center of your personal universe in the way you dress, comb your hair, shop, etc. In small things and big things, take Christ as the center!
7. To give the Lord the first place in our life means that we are walking worthily of the Lord to please Him in all things, bearing fruit in every good work, and growing in the knowledge of God (see 2 Cor. 5:9, Col. 1:10, and Heb. 11:5-6). Before Enoch was translated, he obtained the testimony that he was well-pleasing to God. O, Lord, before I go to meet You or before Your return, I want to obtain the testimony that I am well-pleasing to You! We need to grow, live, and express Christ, by growing in His knowledge, and by walking with God, that is, by taking Christ as your center and everything, and doing everything according to His revelation and leading.
8. To give the Lord the first place in our life is to have a clear sky between us and the Lord and a throne above it (see Ezek. 1:22-26). When there is absolutely no separation or problem between us and the Lord, we are filled with the heavenly atmosphere, condition, and situation of His ruling presence (signified by the Man on the throne, who is heavenly). We need to allow the Lord to rule and reign in us. To have a clear sky with a throne above it where God is ruling and reigning in us is the highest point in our Christian experience.
9. To give the Lord the first place in our life is to hold the Head, Christ (Col. 2:19). Holding Christ as the Head means we stay intimately connected to the Lord as the Head of the Body. We need to enthrone Christ in our being as the Ruler and Decider of everything in our life, and stay intimately connected to the Head to be richly supplied and grow with the growth of God.
10. To give the Lord the first place in our life is to ask for the counsel of Jehovah in everything in our life (see Josh. 9:14). The Israelites were tricked by the Gibeonites to let them live and not destroy them because they did not ask for the counsel of Jehovah. We need to ask the Lord about everything in our daily life – little things, big things, and every little detail.
11. To give the Lord the first place in our life is to practically give the flow of the Lord Jesus within us the preeminence in all that we are and we do (see Ezek. 47:1; Rev. 22:1-2). The flow of the Lord should be given the preeminence and first place in us! The Lord’s practical preeminence and presence in us is the flowof life. Do you have the Lord Jesus flowing in you right now? If not, open to Him, confess, remove any barriers, and treasure the sweet flow of life – even depend on the flow! This flow is out of the throne and brings the throne with it!
12. To give the Lord the first place in our life means to be dominated, governed, directed, led, and moved by our mingled spirit, caring for the rest in our spirit (see 2 Cor. 2:13-14). Paul was dominated, governed, led, controlled, directed, and moved by the rest in his spirit – by being a captive of Christ, taking Christ as a General, and being in His triumphant procession. It is good to pray, Lord, conquer me. Lord, make me Your captive. Never let me win. Defeat me all the time!
[the above sharing are inspired from brother Ed Marks' sharing on, Properly Appreciating Christ by Giving Him the First Place in Everything in a Practical Way, in message 1 of the winter training. Topic: Crystallization Study of the Psalms(part 2).]
Available at http://www.agodman.com/blog/what-does-it-mean-to-give-the-lord-the-preeminence-the-first-place-in-everything/. Accessed 6 January 2012.