People Pleaser or God Pleaser? In His Word 7-24-17

And God said “Let bright lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night. They will be signs to mark off the seasons, the days, and the years.” Genesis 1:14
It is a new day every day, but for some reason we choose January to start new beginning attitude. Beginnings are good, so we can go with that! God started it all on the fourth day of creation, as He created the day and night, beginnings, changes and new starts. At the beginning of any day, week or year, we should pray this prayer:
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me again the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. Then I will teach your ways to sinners and they will return to you. Psalm 51:10-13
That is my plan for the year ahead. I plan to do a better job at listening and obeying what God tells me to do. No matter what I think I am capable of doing, He has gone before me. He is giving me direction. I need to step out in boldness and no longer kowtow to other people's ideas of how I should be or what I should do. I will follow what He tells me to do.

I am so guilty of trying to please people that it is not funny. I need to remember that I only need to please God. I think He was trying to tell me that for about a year. He reminded me of how King Saul lost his kingdom for trying to please men instead of obeying God. Ouch!

The funny thing is, that story of Saul has always gotten to me. I looked at how he blew it by trying to do what he thought was OK instead of what was right with God. I also like the story of Paul’s conversion and the little bit we know about his pre-conversion life. He sought to do what God would have him do, but did not listen to God Himself for the directions. Instead, he did what he thought was right and killed or helped to kill numerous Christians. How many people have we failed because we did what we thought they wanted instead of what God wanted us to do? I have to admit, it is hard to do what God says sometimes. It is not always the popular thing!

Take our choice as a family to home school. We did it because it is what God led us to do for our children. Knowing that He is the center of our home, we followed His directions. It has not always been easy though, because a lot of people have thought us either snobbish, odd or extreme. Through the years, God was the leader of our schooling and still is today. We pray first and trust Him to show us when it’s time to send one of our kids to school outside our home.

Following God with our children is one thing, but what about when God tells you to go to a co-worker and tell them that they need to quit complaining? What if He wants us to help someone quit smoking, or overeating and start exercising? Why is that more difficult than a life-changing thing like teaching your children? As my daughter said, “You’ve got to, like, talk to some people.”

Talking to God and relying on Him to direct us in our own little world is easier than helping someone else fix a problem, or encouraging someone to do better. This is an interesting thing. It is where Saul went wrong and Paul as well. When we have to deal with someone other than ourselves, we need to just do it.

We need to do the right thing by doing what God tells us to do, as He tells us to, and when He tells us to do it. After all, if God is for us then who can stand against us? We need to think about the things He is giving us to do and know that if He told us to do something, we can do it. Of course, if we are not sure the direction we received is from God, we would need to pray first and ask Him to assure us that it was indeed Him.

This reminds me of Gideon. In Judges 6:11-16, Gideon is called by God to do what was impossible in his eyes. God called him a mighty man of valor when Gideon felt like he was just a coward and a wimp. So, of course, he did not trust this word was coming from God. There was no sign of a mighty man in him! Instead of just laughing it off and sending the Angel of the Lord away, Gideon prayed. He set out a fleece on the ground. If it was damp when the ground was dry, and dry when the ground was wet, that was his proof that this was indeed of God. Well, God came through for Gideon. He had indeed had called him to greatness.

This week, think on things that God has called you to do that you have been putting off. Think about Gideon and what he went through, and see how God will come through for you. That is your homework.Please God in all that you do, and stop trying to do everything!

Dear Heavenly Father, help us to listen to Your voice and follow Your directions. Give us the faith to trust You to do the work through us. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Suggested Reading: Judges 6:1-40; Judges 7:1-25; Judges 8:1-35; Psalm 51:1-19; Genesis 1:1-31.