Monday, March 14, 2016

I Always Do What Is Pleasing to Him

By Melanie Rigney

… The people complained against God and Moses, “Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in this desert, where there is no food or water? We are disgusted with this wretched food!” (Numbers 21:5)

O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you. (Psalm 102:2)
(Jesus told the Pharisees:) “The one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, because I always do what is pleasing to him.” Because he spoke this way, many came to believe in him. (John 8:29-30)

Lord, I know what is pleasing to You, but too often, I’d rather do what brings me pleasure in the moment. Help me to discipline myself… and obey.

“Because I always do what is pleasing to him.”

I think about a recent day, and am all but ashamed to call myself a Christian.

It started before dawn with grumbling and complaining. A couple of good hours followed, then more complaining, seasoned with some sniping. A bit of gossiping came next, and then some whining. Some service and joy ensued, but they faded away in the face of judging, along with large dollops of crabbiness and crankiness.

And after all that, I wondered why I felt so tired and drained at the end of the day. It was plain as could be. I was a Pharisee. I was an Israelite. I had spent large swathes of my day pushing the Lord away, doing what I wanted in the moment rather than what I knew in my heart and soul would be pleasing to Him.

We hear all the time about the two greatest commandments: Love God, and love others as yourself. Great, challenging advice. But John reminds us today why we should follow it: because it’s pleasing to the Father, and what could be better than to please Him?

Keep a journal today of your thoughts, words, and actions that are less than pleasing to the Lord. Resolve that tomorrow’s list will be shorter.

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