Mark Alan Williams
Having Just One Person To Please Brings Peace
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Have you ever tried to please people who it turned out were impossible to please? What profound frustration!
I’ve had people like that. What’s worse is when I confronted them, they seemed to either feel like it was their duty to be dissatisfied no matter what, or they simply enjoyed being that way.
“Our purpose is to please God, not people.” (1 Thessalonians 2:4b NLT)
One of the great benefits of being a Christ-follower is that I don’t have to try to please the impossible-to-please. In fact, I don’t have to please anyone except the most gracious, loving and understanding One who has ever lived: Jesus!
So how does this impact my daily living? In big ways!
Here are 3 practical ways that having only one Person to please brings great happiness and peace:
One: I know that the one Person who really matters is already pleased with me
As a born again follower of Jesus, I know that I am cleansed forever from my sins. There is nothing more I need do—Jesus paid my debt on the cross. I am saved by grace, through faith, not by works! See Ephesians 2:8-9.
The Bible tells Christians to confess their sins, but this is to restore fellowship with God, not to bring salvation. See 1 John 1:9. It’s similar to a parent forgiving a child for disobeying. The child is never disowned, but there is a relationship barrier until the child admits the wrong and asks forgiveness.
Absolutely nothing can separate a true Christian from the love of God! See Romans 8:35-39.
I have just one person to please and I know that He is already pleased with me.
This doesn’t mean I sin with impunity: bad things happen when we stray. I get myself into the troubles that come with sin.
What it means is that when God sees my sins, He sees Jesus’ payment on the cross.
I am adopted into God’s family and He doesn’t disown His children. See Ephesians 1:5.
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:1 ESV)
So I live to bring joy to the One who is already pleased with me. He is the only one that really counts.
I live to bring joy to the One who is already pleased with me. | CLICK TO TWEET
Sure I want to please my wife, children, fellow employees, friends. But all that pales in comparison to knowing that the Almighty is already pleased with me. Bringing Him further pleasure is the bottom line.
“Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10 NIV)
Two: My work is reduced to one job.
I’m the kind that always has a list of things that I wanted to get done and didn’t. This seems to happen no matter how big the list of things I did get done is.
I sometimes berate myself for not doing everything I could.
But what I’ve learned is that in the end I only have one job to do: to please Jesus. If I do that, I have done enough.
“So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.” (2 Corinthians 5:9)
I still love to accomplish all I can on my “to do” list. But I have a different criterion for a productive day: did I please Jesus? If I have done that, that is enough.
“So we have not stopped praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.” (Colossians 1:9-10 NLT)
How do I know if I have pleased Him and did what He asked me to do? I ask Him in prayer. He speaks to my heart through conviction or affirmation.
For help with hearing the voice of God through Listening Prayer see my articles on:
Three: My concerns are reduced to one concern.
At times I have been in knots with worries and stress. In seminary I went to the doctor and He did several uncomfortable tests of my digestive system. In the end he pronounced me healthy, and said that I was just very stressed over too many worries and concerns.
Over the years I’ve grown in this area and now realize that although I am a free agent, God is ultimately in control and “All things work together for good…” (Romans 8:28).
Don’t ask me to explain how this works, I cannot. How I make my foolish decisions and yet God ultimately guides everything for good is inexplicable.
So I don’t worry about explaining it. I just trust the FACT that I don’t have to be concerned with all the events of life, some of which seem very wrong. I just have one concern: pleasing Jesus.
If I please Him, I don’t have to be overly concerned with all the other stuff.
“Our goal is to measure up to God’s plan for us.” (2 Corinthians 10:13 LB)
The apostle Paul served Christ so diligently that enemies of Christ put him in jail. And while in jail, his “Christian” detractors actually enjoyed the fact that he was suffering for Jesus. See Philippians 1:15-21.
He couldn’t please either of these groups. Who could he please? He could only please one Person, the only One who counted.
Paul wrote, “And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better.” (Philippians 1:20b-21 NLT)
For more help with handling criticism, rejection, bullying and insults, check out these articles I’ve written:
How to Survive Rejection and Find Acceptance Today How Reluctant Leaders Become Confident Achievers for God