Please God, Not Man!
1 Thessalonians 2:4 “On the contrary, we speak as those approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts.”
Are you a people pleaser? Most of us to some extent or another care what other people think. We worry about our looks, weight, clothes, hairstyle, education, finances, and plenty more. We worry especially what our friends, family, significant other and even the people who don’t like us think. The thing is our job isn’t to please people it is to do what God has called us to do and fulfill our purpose in life.
I spent many years working in retail and we had the motto, the customer was always right, even if they were wrong. Some customers were easy to please and others were not going to be pleased no matter what you did or how you tried to fix the issues. There were plenty of days that I went home frustrated over a customer who was mean and nasty, and nothing I or anyone else did made them happy. In the end we had to realize that sometimes you just can’t please everyone.
When we go through like trying to please people, we will ultimately fail. Sure you can please all the people some of the time, and some people all the time but you will never please all the people, all of the time. This means we have to determine who we will please. We can spend a life futilely pleasing everyone we encounter or we can focus on pleasing God. In the end, we’ll find it is a lot easier to please God than to please the entire world.
Shakespeare said in Hamlet
“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man”
When we are true to ourselves and our focus is on pleasing the Lord and not people we will be true to ourselves and in the end when we stand before the Lord, if He is pleased with us, so will everyone else.
P.S. A small piece of advice to our students reading this. While we must please God, it also means obeying our parents and being submitted to their authority, this especially goes for those of us with parents who may not be saved. It can be easy to say this is what God wants me to do but sometimes it is really our flesh. I know as an adult, I still miss the mark on hearing God’s voice from time to time and if we are not careful we decide what we want to do must be what God wants us to do and in the end we disobey and rebel against parents who have been given the authority and job to watch over and protect us. There will come a time in each of our lives where the decisions are ours and ours alone, as are the consequences. Until then listen to the people God has placed in your lives. Even those who are not saved have experience and wisdom they can pass on to you. (Check out Ephesians 6:1-2 & Colossians 3:20)