“Is my primary goal in life to please Him and to be acceptable to Him, or is it something less, no matter how lofty it may sound?”
(Oswald Chambers, My Utmost For His Highest.)
Many years ago we had friends who struggled with their son. He had a very difficult time following and obeying simple instructions. Many other friends thought that this young man was the most kind and helpful kid. When they would arrive at the house, this young man always answered the door with a polite greeting, “Hello, Mr. and Mrs. So in So. May I help you carry anything inside?” Unfortunately in seeming to be helpful this young boy was actually being disobedient and rebellious. You see, his parents had asked him time and time again not to answer the door. Many times when he had been given specific instructions to stay seated and finish his school work or even was supposed to be sitting in time out he would leave and go answer the door or go do something else. His actions seemed noble and lofty, but in reality He was being disobedient.
Sometimes we act this way too. We DO a lot of things in the name of God, but we are NOT really doing what He has asked of us! Instead of following God we do what others ask or expect of us or worse we simply feed our own ego by making ourselves look good in the eyes of others.
What makes matters worse, in ministry, people expect to see you doing lofty things that seem impressive. They ask questions like, “How many people have you led to Christ this year?” or “How many boys do you have at the orphanage?” People want to be impressed and often expect that if what you are doing is not impressive to them, then it is not worthwhile. When in fact this couldn’t be further from the truth.
When the God of Creation has asked something simple of us we can actually be walking in rebellion and encouraging pride by doing something that seems more lofty. Be cautious to follow His instructions no matter how simple they appear, in doing so we become pleasing to the Creator. (And shouldn’t that be our goal? Not to be pleasing to others, but instead, we should long to be pleasing to God.)