How often do you run around all day doing things for your kids, your husband, your mom, your friends, your church, and your kid’s school, only to land on the couch at night exhausted realizing you really did nothing in that time to serve yourself. We live in a world where it is honorable to give give give but then we hear our self-help gurus trying to remind us to put the oxygen mask on first before we help others get theirs on. If mom isn’t well, no one is well. Fill up your cup so you can fill others. The inspirational quotes are endless. It is interesting that they are missing one major point. They are all very short sighted. It would be like telling your cell phone to charge itself before it can help you. How could it? It is not the source of energy. Neither are you! Focusing on yourself first won’t really help all that much. In the short term it can help, but over the long run your self-help books, self-service in the way of reading a book, getting a massage, taking time our for you, will do nothing for you unless you are plugging into the Source.
Paul states in Galatians 1:10 “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” The more you focus on man, whether others or self, you will not be focusing on Jesus. By trying to please people, we by default, will not be pleasing Jesus. You cannot serve both. The rub comes when we start to live this out. By simply trying to please Jesus and do what He wants, others will get their feathers ruffled. You will start to experience in a small way what religious persecution feels like. Paul could have very well gotten persecution from both sides. The Jews were mad at him for hanging with the Gentiles and teaching them that the old customs were no longer necessary. The Gentiles were mad at him because he was telling them they were following false teachers. He was Truth with a capital T everywhere he went and humans who are not the children of God didn’t like it.
Sadly today we try to be a slave to everyone and anything. Many of us are natural people pleasers. People pleasers usually have an interesting double edge where they don’t want to upset people, however in their eagerness they end up upsetting the people they only wanted to help. We need to look to the Source and remember the only One to please is God. Ask yourself this simple question every day: is everything I am doing today something that brings glory to and is pleasing to God? If the answer is no, then reset. Redirect your intentions and rework your schedule around the pleasure of God… not you, not man. Pleasing your husband or serving your kids is something that can be pleasing to God. The key is motive. If your motive is to please God, your intention and attitude will drastically change. Do everything as if you are doing it for Jesus! (1 Corinthians 10:31)