Pleasing God, Not People
Having walked the earth for 36 years and having been in ministry for 17 of those, I’ve become convinced that there is one huge secret to greater confidence, peace, and joy in living. Ready for it? Seek to please God, not people.
Paul put it this way,
For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts. - 1 Thessalonians 2:4 (NLT)
So much of what we say, what we wear and drive, how we make decisions, and how we relate to others is designed to keep the world around us happy with us. Nobody likes to be disliked, so we work hard to keep up the facade of one who never lets anyone down. And the people we’re trying to please? They’re doing the same thing.
Eventually, the pressure is too much and we blow. We sink. We throw relationships, careers, and reputations away. We can never perform well enough to avoid hurt, rejection, and criticism from people. What we can do is find our rest in the grace of God.
He knows the motives of our hearts. He knows our sin and lets us know that there’s no point trying to deceive Him. He invites us to come into His presence and be real, authentic, and transparent with the promise that instead of backlash, He gives grace to the humble.
Your life will change radically the moment you decide to live it to please God and not other people. You should serve and encourage others, but never for the purpose of their praise. Live for the smile of God alone today!