In a busy world filled with distractions and temptations, it can be challenging to keep God at the center of your life. However, putting God first is the key to finding true peace, joy and fulfillment.
If you’re wondering how to make God your top priority in all things, you’ve come to the right place.
Here’s a quick answer: To put God first, start each day with prayer and Bible study, invite Him into every decision and interaction, surrender your plans to His will, cultivate an attitude of gratitude, and serve others.
Spend Time in Prayer and Scripture Each Day
Making prayer and Bible study a consistent part of your daily routine is one of the best ways to put God first. When you start and end your day connecting with God, it sets a tone of dependence on Him. Here are some tips for building regular prayer and Scripture reading into your life.
– Begin and end your day in prayer and Bible study
Set aside some time first thing when you wake up to offer God your day and lift up your plans and responsibilities to Him. Read a few verses or a psalm to begin engaging your heart and mind with the Word.
End your day reflecting on how God worked and giving Him glory in prayer for what was accomplished.
– Meditate on God’s Word throughout the day
Keep a Bible verse or passage open on your phone or print it out so you can meditate on it during the day. Set reminders to pause and read it, thinking through what it means and how it applies to your day. Let it shape your thoughts, attitudes and behaviors as you go about your tasks.
– Let the Word shape your thoughts and actions
As you pray and study the Bible daily, ask God to use His Word to transform you by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2). Submit yourself to what Scripture says, trusting God fully in how you live your life.
The more time you spend in the Word, the more impact it can have on how you think, act, and approach every situation.
Living with an awareness of God’s presence starts with regularly connecting with Him in prayer and Bible intake. Schedule consistent daily time with the Lord and let His Word dwell in you richly all throughout your day.
Invite God Into Your Decisions
Making decisions in life can be challenging, but as believers we have a powerful advantage – the ability to invite God into our decision-making process. Consulting God first honors His lordship in our lives and allows His supernatural wisdom to guide us.
Here are some tips for making God-honoring choices:
Ask for God’s guidance with every choice
Start by making prayer your first response to any decision you face. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide your thinking and reveal His direction for you (John 16:13). Tell God you want His will above your own. As GotQuestions.org notes, “We must have a spirit of humility and obedience” as we seek His leading.
Check that your decisions align with biblical principles
Get into the daily habit of asking yourself if your choices fit with scriptural values. For example, the Bible says “bad company corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33), so consider whether a friend group or relationship reflects wise, godly influence or not.
Let biblical standards be your plumb line when weighing options.
Be willing to change course if needed
No one gets it right 100% of the time, but being flexible and willing to pivot is critical. If God checks your spirit that a choice isn’t right, humbly move in a new direction. Proverbs 16:9 says, “A man’s mind plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps” – so let Him reset your path if you’ve veered off course!
Staying close to Jesus through prayer and scripture keeps you aligned with His will.
With practice, making God your first consult on all decisions becomes a natural reflex. You’ll find confidence and clarity from having heaven’s guidance steering you. Why not try it this week and see where He leads?
Surrender Your Plans to God’s Will
– Offer your goals, dreams and schedules to God
When we truly want to put God first, one of the most impactful things we can do is surrender our own plans and agenda to Him. This means taking all of our goals, dreams, schedules, and timelines and laying them at His feet for His direction (Proverbs 16:3).
For example, you may have planned your career path or retirement timeline in a certain way. Offer that to the Lord, asking Him to guide and direct your steps according to His purposes. We acknowledge through surrender that His way and His timing are perfect (Proverbs 3:5-6).
– Hold plans loosely and with open hands
Surrendering your plans to God also means holding them with open hands rather than clenched fists. Don’t cling tightly to your own agenda or become stubborn when things don’t go according to your design.
God may lead you to shift directions, pursue different opportunities, or lay certain endeavors aside for a season. When we remain pliable vessels, willing to go wherever and do whatever the Lord guides us into, we can walk in tremendous freedom and joy.
Hold onto His promises and will, but keep everything else with loosely open hands (James 4:13-15).
– Accept that God’s way is better than your own
A key aspect of surrendering plans to God is acknowledging that His way truly is better than our own. As stated in Isaiah 55:8-9, His thoughts and ways are infinitely higher than ours. He alone can see how all our life experiences, relationships, hardships and talents might weave together for our growth, witness and unique Kingdom impact.
Though surrendering your own agendas can be difficult, the Lord promises to lead you on the very best and most fulfilling path when you commit to following His will over your own. Fixing your hope and sights more fully on Him each day is what enables wholehearted surrender and trust (Jeremiah 29:11).
Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude
Thank God throughout the day for His blessings
Starting your day by thanking God for another day of life sets the tone for gratitude. Make it a habit to offer a prayer of thanks for waking up and for the gift of a new day. Throughout your daily activities, look for small reasons to thank Him – for the food you eat, the people you encounter, the work you get to do.
Turn your thoughts into “thank you” prayers as often as possible. Seeing life as a gift cultivates gratitude in your heart.
Focus more on what you have than what you lack
It’s easy to fixate on what we don’t have, but shifting perspective to appreciate what we do have is key. Make a list of your blessings – your health, loved ones, a roof over your head, eyes to see, and so on.
Reflect on these gifts often, so you don’t lose sight of how much you’ve already been given. This focus outweighs what may seem lacking. As the saying goes “Gratitude turns what we have into enough.”
Praise God especially in difficult times
Hardships can either make us bitter or better, depending on our response. When challenges arise, intentionally turn to God in praise first rather than complaints. Thank Him that He is with you in the trial, and trust that He will work it for your good in some way (Romans 8:28).
This act of faith pleases God, as it shows we believe in His sovereignty even when we cannot see the reason behind our circumstances. Praising God in the storm will lift your spirit and strengthen your gratitude muscle.
Cultivating an attitude of gratitude takes practice, but is so worthwhile. It not only honors God but fills our hearts with joy in the midst of each day’s ups and downs. When thanks becomes our constant posture toward Him, our lives are transformed.
We realize just how blessed we really are, even in – or especially in – difficult moments. A grateful heart toward God overflows with contentment and peace.
Serve and Help Others
Putting God first in our lives means prioritizing service and helping others. As the Bible teaches us, “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms” (1 Peter 4:10).
Here are some impactful ways we can serve others and reflect God’s love.
Look for Ways to Meet Others’ Needs
Keep your eyes open for people in need around you. Get in the habit of observing people you encounter and looking for ways you might be able to help or bless them. For example, if you notice a neighbor is having car trouble, offer to give them a ride.
Or if a coworker seems stressed, ask them how you can help lighten their load.
Serve Your Family, Church and Community
God calls us to serve those closest around us. Look for unmet needs in your own family that you can fulfill – watch your siblings’ kids so they can have a date night, help an elderly parent with yardwork, etc. At church, sign up to assist with hospitality, childcare or other service teams.
In your neighborhood and city, seek out and serve with organizations meeting practical needs for the disadvantaged.
|of US adults say they could do more to help people in their community
|say that ordinary people can make a big difference in their community
So get out there and make a difference! Be the one to take that extra step to reach out. You never know what impact you might have.
Care for the Poor, Widowed and Orphaned
Throughout Scripture, God calls His people to demonstrate special care and compassion for the poor, widowed and orphaned. When we serve vulnerable groups like these, we reflect God’s heart for justice and mercy.
There are so many ways we can care for these precious people who may otherwise be forgotten or downtrodden. We can give financially to ministries serving impoverished communities globally and locally. We can volunteer at shelters caring for those without homes.
We can foster or adopt orphaned children. We can visit senior care facilities and build meaningful friendships with residents. We can stand up for just policies and reforms that provide opportunity for those in need.
When we take time to notice and serve people in need around us, we live out God’s call for justice and mercy. And undoubtedly, we will be blessed as we prioritize caring for others.
Putting God first requires continually surrendering your will, plans and desires to Him. But it fills your life with meaning, purpose and joy. When you seek God before all else, He promises to provide for you and guide you.
If you commit to making God your top priority daily, you’ll experience His incredible peace and find true fulfillment.