Today’s Truth

I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.

Psalm 57:2

Friend to Friend

My heart plays ping-pong. It shifts focus from one affection to another faster than you can say, “Squirrel!” I have never been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD – or any other condition with scary capitol letters – but I’ve surely been known to major on some minors in my day. Practically every day. I worry about things that don’t really matter… at least not eternally.

The other day started out great. In the wee hours of early, I poured some hot coffee, grabbed my prayer journal and my Bible, and headed to the couch to spend time with God. My heart spilled with worship as I fixed my affections on Him. I was prepared to start my day. Fueled and focused.

A while later, my son came downstairs ready for school. We exchanged tender morning greetings and hugs as he grabbed a bowl for cereal. But when he sat down to eat, I realized that he was wearing two different socks. As he ate his breakfast, I tried to lovingly influence him toward a matching pair… to no avail. Hmmph! When he left for the bus stop, I was horrified, so I lamented. Where have I gone wrong with this child? Why does his 13-year old brain not think it is inappropriate to wear un-matching socks? What will people think? Surely the teachers will have a juicy gossip session in the lunchroom about how awful and inadequate I am as a mother because my “it’s-all-good” child went to school with two different socks!

AS IF it matters.

Ping. Pong.

My heart can turn on a dime. One moment it is fixed on the Lord and the next it prioritizes drama. Does God care if my son’s socks match? I’m thinking No. Is it okay to want my children to wear matching socks? Yes. Surely I can speak into a practical matter, but the way I respond matters more – especially if things don’t go my way. Let it go, already.

I really do need to let it go.

I need to let a lot of things go. I need to let go of reactions, emotions, activities or thoughts that don’t honor God. He wants to be our top priority! That’s why we were created. To love him above all things. He wants the details, activities and decisions of our lives to be prioritized around Him – not just our Sunday mornings and major decisions… but our every morning and our every decision. We must look to Him as our desire – our ultimate – our obsession. Then the rest of life falls into place.

God is El Elyon. This Hebrew term for God can be translated two ways: the Most High God or God Most High. Either way, they mean the same thing: He is to be preeminent in our lives. He is supreme. There is nothing above Him or beyond Him.

God is jealous for us.

He wants us to be obsessed with Him and Him alone.

God becomes El Elyon to us when our affections for Him and His ways are prioritized above all else. The Lord wants us to be focused worshipers. To have hearts that look to Him and His strength; seeking His face always. (Psalm 105:4) One of my favorite things about the Psalms is that they are honest. Refreshingly so. Like the psalmist, we need to allow God to filter our responses.

I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.

                        (Psalm 57:2, ESV)

I’m so encouraged by what Scripture says here: when I cry out to God and make Him my ultimate, He fulfills His purpose for me. Yes, please! That’s what I want. His purpose – not mine. We don’t have to try to find our happiness and purpose in other things. When we prioritize God and put Him as God Most High in our lives, He fulfills us in a way that none of these other things can!

All of life needs to be yielded to our Most High God.

How can this be practical in our lives? What does El Elyon mean to your worries? Do you obsess about them? If you compare your fears to El Elyon, the Pinnacle of existence, do they still look so big? What does El Elyon mean to your busy life, your weight loss goals or your desire to please others? Which master leads? Are you more concerned about pleasing man or pleasing God?

This is where the rubber meets the roads.

Where your ping meet your pong.

You must choose what, or who, will be Most High in your life.

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, El Elyon, I really want to get this one! Help me to place You above all and before all. Show me what that looks like in the midst of my drama. Help me to yield to You when I want to take control. Be my Everything.

In Jesus’ name,


Now It’s Your Turn

  • Spend a moment in prayer about the things that distract you from prioritizing God above all and before all.
  • Let’s take the conversation deeper: swing by my blog or my Facebook page and tell me how today’s devotion relates to your life?

More from the Girlfriends

I love this name of God so much that I co-wrote a song about it called El Elyon with my friend, Dave Clark. Click here to hear the song!

Today’s GiG devotion is adapted from Knowing God by Name by Sharon Jaynes, Gwen Smith, & Mary Southerland by permission of Multnomah, division of Random House, Inc. Get a copy from your favorite Christian retailer or CLICK HERE to order the book from Amazon.

4 Responses to “What’s Your Ultimate?”

  1. ling says:

    Dear Gwen, thank you for today’s devotion. It’s the smallest thing about unmatching sock that takes up our emotion and energy when it doesnt matter to God at all. I am having many moments like this and your words has encourage me to see God’s bigger picture and that I do not need to whine and be upset about “unmatching socks” moments.

    Thank you, it was an answered prayer through your words.

  2. Akosua says:

    Gwen God bless you.

  3. Jessica says:

    Yes, I have had my unmatching socks moments, all too often. I find myself stressing out about what others will think. I end up worrying about small and unimportant little details. Often things that others probably don’t even notice. I do not want to be that way. I want my focus to be on God. If I put all my focus on Him, I know He will guide me to what is important. God will show me where to go. God will show me a life with much less stress. He is strong enough to take care of the big things in my life, and with Him I am strong enough to let go of the little things.

  4. Cheryl says:

    Dear Gwen, Thank you for your uplifting words to jump-start my day, that God Most High is my ultimate focus.

    As you speak about your son, it is obvious that he is going through a phase that a a parent you will have to adjust to. A phase in which his peers have become his focus of whose approval matters more. As a teacher, we have been instructed not to allow our students to wear unmatched socks, since it may be gang-related. So your concerns are real. I would advise that you get to know his friends, watch for extreme changes in behavior, before taking action for behavioral intervention. You obviously love your son, and very concerned about his image. The Holy Spirit will let you know that there is something or nothing to be concerned about. The sock phase will pass. Enjoy your son, with all of his quirks. And keep writing your inspirational words of real-life scenarios leading to our trust in a Supreme God. Continue to be blessed.

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"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…" 1 Thessalonians 2:8