In the context of this verse, Jesus had just told the rich, young ruler to sell all he possessed, give it to the poor, and follow him. Jesus was able to read the heart of this man, and saw that although he was trying to do the right things, he loved his possessions more than he loved God. Jesus saw this was a temptation for those who are rich, and said that it is very difficult for those to enter the Kingdom of God. Peter then said in verse 28 that the disciples had left everything to follow him.

This is where Jesus taught that those who put obedience to God first, above all else, will inherit so much more in God's Kingdom, including eternal life, and even now have many blessings. Then he told them that "many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first."

Jesus was talking about status, position, and possessions here. He was saying not to regard the wealth of this life as important, as those who do will not be as blessed in the Kingdom. This is further emphasized in Matthew 16:24,25, "Then Jesus said to His disciples, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it."

Those who have consecrated their hearts to do God's will focus on following Jesus, and living as he did, not on any earthly gain. These work honestly to provide for their families (1 Timothy 5:8), and trust God's wisdom to give them what they need (Luke 12:29,30). Beyond that we are not promised earthly riches, though God's love and mercy often will allow us so much more than our basic needs (Matthew 6:33). While grateful for these blessings, these do not want anything that would draw their hearts away from our Heavenly Father.

God can only give the highest honors and blessings to those who can honestly say along with the Psalmist (Psalm 40:8), "I delight to do Thy will, O my God; Thy Law is within my heart." These are the only ones who will be ready for the glorious work He has for them; and those who have not grown to love God and focus on what He knows is best will only be fit for a lesser place and work.