What does "Put God first" REALLY mean? I feel guided to write about this topic since here in the U.S. we are celebrating the 4th of July this week. It's our Independence Day...a day all about freedom. However, I see that many of us don't feel very free because we are living in self-imposed chains due to our belief of what it means to put God first.
We all want to feel free, but from what I can see from my own life and from coaching the many men, women and kids I've worked with over the years, the old way of putting God first doesn't give us peace, joy, and happiness. It doesn't give us freedom. Instead, this old belief keeps us from knowing and experiencing God. It creates pain and suffering.
Like many, I was raised to believe that putting God first meant to put myself on the back burner and have compassion for everyone else. It meant that I had to treat others with thoughtfulness, love and kindness, but not do this for myself. It meant that everyone else mattered and I had to "be good" by putting myself last.
Putting your thoughts, feelings and desires last is like putting God last. When you believe that you must deny the real you because this is the good and loving thing to do, you disconnect from your truth. And when you disconnect from your truth, you disconnect from God.
God created you to be YOU. When you deny yourself, it's as if you're saying, "God, you made a mistake when I was created."
God didn't make a mistake when you were created. But every time you put yourself and your feelings on the back burner, you're acting as if you are a mistake. Treating yourself this way is what causes your pain. That's because you are separating yourself from love. Love is putting God first by giving yourself permission to be you.
What's a good way to tell that you're disconnected from God? When you feel like an emotional mess. Every time you feel angry, sad, resentful, unworthy, depressed, you name it, you are being given a sure sign that you're putting God last.
Being an emotional mess is not love!
THIS is NOT putting God first!
You know what I mean by this. When we feel like an emotional mess, we tend to take out our pain on the people around us. This is definitely NOT the loving thing to do.
Loving yourself is!
On this 4th of July week, I invite you to step into freedom. Try a new way of putting God first. It starts with loving and accepting yourself unconditionally! It means that you take the time to get to know who you were created to be and let go of the rules in your subconscious mind telling you how you should behave. To truly put God first you have to let go of what others think and follow your heart. This means letting go of what your parents, spouse, kids, boss, and friends think. When you put God first, you give yourself a voice. You express yourself in a way that is true to you. You set boundaries and respect yourself. You let your light shine.
Now here's the really cool part...
WHEN YOU LOVE YOURSELF THIS WAY, YOU BECOME A MESSENGER OF GOD!
That's because you become more joyful, playful, peaceful, and abundant. In this love, you feel worthy and open up to receive miracle after miracle! Lack and the need to compete melt away. No longer do you feel separate from the world. You feel a part of the whole. And in this feeling, you want the best for everyone. You want them to experience this same kind of love.
You thought you were kind, compassionate and loving to others before! Well, wait until you try it this way! As you put God first this NEW way, the love EXPLODES from you! You see everything with a whole new set of eyes. YOU BECOME AN EXPRESSION OF GOD'S LOVE IN EVERYTHING YOU DO!
I've been living this way for a long time. My whole life changed when I shifted my attitude of what it truly means to put God first. To feel this kind of freedom and connection is AMAZING!
We all want freedom to be who we are. But we are the ones who keep the chains intact by continuing to suppress ourselves. We don't love ourselves unconditionally because we feel we will be "bad" if we do. But this old way of putting God first is not the truth.
YOU'RE NOT BAD WHEN YOU LOVE YOURSELF.
YOU PUT GOD FIRST WHEN YOU HONOR AND LOVE THE REAL YOU!