Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls.
If any man will come after me, let him deny himself
The fact that it is hard to prioritize God is not a mistake. That you find it difficult to do is not an indication that you are broken. Perhaps you have told yourself that it’ll be easier to make time for God later. It won’t be. It’s not going to be easier once you have your degree, or the kids are a bit older, or you’ve retired. Coming to God will always be a challenge. It has been designed that way.
Because the obstacle in your way is your own self. Coming to Him will always mean denying what you want right now in favor of what He wants. The self is always with you, and so the challenge forever remains. The sooner we accept that this battle is with the self, and not our circumstances, the sooner we can take a stand against it.
A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls
So yes, it is hard to prioritize God, and for that reason alone, making time for Him builds character. By devoting ourselves to Him, in spite of all the noise in this world, we are learning the essential art of self-mastery.
All of the spiritual blessings that follow acts of faith are then extra blessings on top! Learning how to govern yourself is already worthy enough of a cause. You are bending your will to higher things, and becoming a better version of yourself for that effort. You are becoming godly.
In that night did God appear unto Solomon, and said unto him, Ask what I shall give thee.
And Solomon said unto God, Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?
And God said to Solomon, Wisdom and knowledge is granted unto thee;
And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee.
And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.
And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight.
And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.
Give me wisdom, for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?
And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.
Sometimes we want to follow the vocation God has for us, but we have some blocker in our way. Consider Solomon, called to lead the nation of Israel, but lacking the requisite wisdom to do so. Or Bartimaeus, who had the heart of a disciple, but lacked the ability to even see which way he walked. These men were transformed so that they could answer the call in their hearts.
It is the same for us. When Jesus comes to heal or strengthen us, it empowers us to answer our calling. I once felt blocked in my own discipleship by a misguided fear. I’ll explain more of that later, but that confusion was corrected in me so that I could fully commit to my discipleship.
If you feel like there is a purpose that you are meant to fill, but that you just can’t for some reason, you may not be wrong. Perhaps you truly are being blocked. But then ask God to deliver you from your constraint. Why wouldn’t He help you to perform the very task for which He made you?