We sometimes get the impression that it doesn’t matter what people think about us. After all, “I’ll live the way I want. I don’t care what you think about me.” As Christians, we have to be careful about that attitude.
If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 4:11
Whatever we say or do should be praiseworthy. Of course, that in itself can bring on another set of problems.
We all like to be praised. When we accomplish something worthwhile, we expect people to notice and appreciate us. It makes us feel good about ourselves. There’s nothing wrong with accepting praise for a job well done.
The problem we get into, is wanting to keep it ALL for ourselves. If we live independent of God, then we don’t have to give Him any praise. The fact is, my wisdom isn’t good enough. My strength will never overcome all the obstacles before me. I need to rely upon God.
So there are the two ditches on the side of our path. Not caring at all about how we affect people, or living for praise. Either way, we miss out on God’s best. I need to learn to live with the knowledge that my life represents someone other than myself.
I belong to Christ. I’m a citizen of the Kingdom of God. I’m an ambassador for a realm that’s beyond this world. As such, I can’t allow myself to pick up the attitudes of this world.
When I spend time in the presence of the Lord, I begin to live on a higher level. Then, when someone is touched by my words, I can’t take the credit for it. God gets the glory.
When I do something sacrificial that my flesh would have never agreed to apart from God’s prompting, He get the praise for it.
We should seek to live our lives in such a way that God receives continual praise. This requires us to spend time with Him, meditating on His Word, and listening to His Spirit.
Yes, there will still be things that we’re praised for, but our goal should be for the Lord to receive most of the glory for how we live. In that way our lives will be a continual testimony to the greatness of our God.
Question: How has something that you’ve done brought praise to God?
© Nick Zaccardi 2016