The Right Reason

In the book of Colossians, the Apostle Paul tells us that no matter what we do we should “do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men”. (Col 3:23)  Often I find myself concerned about what other people think of me instead of what Christ’s opinion is.  Of course, this is caused by my selfishness and pride.

This past semester I started studying at home for a college degree.  Every time I sit down to study it’s important for me to remind myself for Whom I am studying.  The purpose of anything I do in my life should always be to please Christ.  By earning this degree, I am working towards something that will give me more opportunities and make me seem more successful to other people.  However, the real purpose for acquiring the degree is not so that I can have a great career or impress people.  My purpose in earning the degree is so that I will be able to serve Christ in different ways than I am able to now.

Sometimes when we do something good and right for the right reason (pleasing Jesus!) people may think we are doing it for a selfish reason and they become upset.  At other times when we do something right or wrong out of a selfish reason people will praise us.  God understands our true motivations.  “…man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)  Jesus should be the most important person and His good opinion the most treasured in our lives.

When Jesus’ opinion is my highest priority I always have a great peace.  I am free from the pressures and opinions of other people and can focus wholeheartedly on doing the best I can for Jesus’ sake.  However, this does not mean that I ignore my authorities’ wishes!  It means that when my authorities give me a task to accomplish I should see it as a personal commission from Christ and do it diligently with a cheerful attitude.  It also doesn’t mean that I can ignore other people!  It means that I should see each person as an opportunity to show Christ’s love.  Unfortunately, I don’t always do these things, but the Lord has been faithful to provide me with many opportunities to practice. 🙂 He will give you opportunities to practice in the coming year, too!

Happy New Year!

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