Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Whom Are You Pleasing? (1 Thessalonians 2:3-6)

Today’s scripture: 1 Thessalonians 2:3-6

God has called each of us to serve Him. We’ve all been given spiritual gifts, and the number one purpose of our using those gifts is to glorify Him. You may have been called to teach or preach (see Ephesians 4:11). Or you may be a generous giver or have a heart to show mercy (see Romans 12:8). You might love to help others or perhaps you’re a gifted administrator (see 1 Corinthians 12:28).

No matter our gifts, using them should never shine the light on us. None of us should “think of himself more highly than he ought …” (Romans 12:3). We should never “seek glory from men”; rather, everything we do should be “pleasing … God who examines our hearts.”

When you use a gift the Lord has given you, are you so focused on pleasing God that it doesn’t matter what others might say? Would you preach or teach even if no one ever told you that your words had encouraged or convicted them? Would you give generously to your church if that giving was never acknowledged—even by the IRS? Would you be merciful to those less fortunate, never hearing a “thank you”?

If you can say, “Yes, I’d serve anyway even if I never, ever received any human kudos,” then you’re serving for the right reasons. You’re using your gifts as God intended. But if you sense that sometimes you seek a bit of glory for yourself, then ask God to help you examine your motives.

And serve “not as pleasing man, but [as pleasing] God …”

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