Tuesday, October 13, 2009

1 Thessalonians 2 -- Pleasing Who?

The world of the church is a funny thing. Its greatest asset can also be its greatest struggle, people. For the most part we like people to like us and support what we are doing. The problem comes when what we feel God calling us to do is not what makes people happy. Paul undoubtedly faced this many times in his ministry. Here in the letter to the church we find Paul answering the issue.

"We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts. You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed -- God is our witness. We are not looking for praise from men, not you or anyone else" vv 4-6. These are some strong words that in and of themselves will not make men happy with you. Paul was I am sure wanted people to like him and the ministry God had given him, yet he was not going about his ministry in a way where the opinion of people guided what he did.

We live lives where what others think about us deeply impacts us. If others like and support what we do, we are encouraged to keep going. When there is friction, it is easy to shrink away allowing the public opinion to derail us. Paul's words cut the heart of the issue. Who are we trying to please? If it is humanity, we will never get there. If it is God, there will be a struggle but that is the only opinion that really matters.

No comments:

Post a Comment