Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
In 1834, Noah Webster penned the following:
“The dignity of man, in the view of the world, consists in elevation of rank in society, superior intelligence, and high minded notion of honor. These are qualities which make men respected in society, and are of real value to the possessor. But these qualities may be and often are united, in the same character, with the foulest vices. There is another species of dignity which consists in the abhorrence of every vice, and in aiming at the excellence which has a resemblance to divine perfections. God is the only perfect being, the only model of all excellence; and no man can be possessed of true dignity of character, without purity of heart, and a divine principle which elevates the affections above the love of that which God abhors and forbids. Whatever God forbids is degrading, however fashionable it may be, and however esteemed among men. It is our first duty to seek the honor that comes from God.”
We are to cling to the principles esteemed by God regardless of whether they are esteemed by man. Being faithful does not mean that we will be fashionable.
Webster provides the important warning that the same characteristics elevated by the world may be linked to the foulest vices. Thus, in order to avoid such a character trap it is necessary to seek God first. As the only model of all excellence, the Lord and His characteristics should be first and foremost in our minds. With a goal of continually striving towards divine perfections, the right characteristics will be added unto us.
PLEASE PRAY FOR A GOD-FIRST MINDSET IN THE LIVES OF AMERICAN CHRISTIANS, INCLUDING YOURSELF. However fashionable the things of the world may be, true dignity of character only comes by placing the Lord first.