Sunday, April 26, 2020

Aim to Please HIM

Have you ever sat in an airport or a busy mall, and just watched and studied people who go by.  What is on their minds, where are they headed, what is important to them, what is driving them to do the things that they do, and who do they love and who loves them?  Going a little deeper, what does God see and think when He looks at them?  What does He see when He looks at me?

Fallen man, our flesh which looks out for ourselves as number one, will and cannot please God.  So since, according to Revelation 4, all things were created for His pleasure, we need to change the way we think from "me" centered to become "pleasing God" motivated.  It follows that the way most people live life, the things that they do and what they are concerned about, fall short of the real purpose of life.

It is not in a man to change himself.  First, we need to come to the place where we need a savior.  In Colorado there is a bridge at Royal Gorge above the Arkansas River that is more than a 1000 feet over the river below.  If I happened to slip and fall over the edge, with sheer rock on both sides and sure death ahead, my first impulse would be to cry, JESUS SAVE ME!  Clearly this really is the position that sinful man is in, because the wages of sin are death.  Usually it takes something desperate to happen before our eyes are opened to see it, and do cry out for help.

Continuing with the example, if Jesus reached down from heaven and grabbed my hand, do you think that I would argue or tell Him which way I want to go?  Of course not, if He said "do this" my answer would be a quick and sincere, "Yes, sir."  So the second step in pleasing God is to learn what He wants.  God says His thoughts are not our thoughts, and His ways are not our ways.  So there is a genuine learning curve needed where  "line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, there a little" we can learn what pleases Him and be transformed in the way we think.  Jesus said it this way, if you continue in My Word, you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free."

If we are created for God's pleasure, what pleases God?  Jesus said it is not those who say "Lord, Lord" but those who do the will of the Father.  A good study of the Word of God provides many instructions explaining God's way of walking in the spirit verses man's way of choosing the flesh. God calls this the difference between life and death with the instruction, choose life!

There is a promise in Psalm 147 that says the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him and in those who hope in His mercy.  Fear of the Lord is a strong concept, much more than being afraid, that suggests pleasing God is our greatest concern, above what others think, above our physical desires, and stronger that our cultural and family background.  It is the motivation that make us willing to turn from sin and selfish desires.

You don't get fear of the Lord by just saying "okay, I have it."  It has to be revealed.   God says in Psalm 34, "Come, you children, listen to Me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord, who is the man who desires life, and loves many days, that he may see good?  Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.  Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it."  Ask the Holy Spirit to teach you.

Agree with Paul, in 2 Corinthians 5:9, who states that whether I live or die, my aim is to please Him.

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