Monthly Archives: July 2014

Trying to Please Myself

Last week I mentioned I felt I may be doing good works to please others or even myself. I believed I was doing what God had shown me, so how was I working to please others?

God gave me the desire to help a single woman with a tiny baby. I loved the bright smile of the little girl and getting to know her mother and how I could best help them. I helped her with a resume and how to search for a job. Then one day she said, “I am a single mother, I should be given enough money that I don’t have to leave my child to work.”

Another woman I befriended was in an abusive relationship. After she was taken to the hospital with broken ribs, I offered to help her move to a women’s shelter. She declined my offer. The situation was similar to one I had been through a couple years ago. I helped that lady move out only to have her move right back in.

I started a self-esteem support group for women. The first three-month session, six women came and I saw real improvement in two of them. The second session, no one came.

Was I doing things on my own or was God really guiding me to these people? I was becoming discouraged when I didn’t see the results I expected. That’s it! I was waiting for the outcome I wanted. Doing God’s will isn’t a matter of seeing the results I want. I knew when I connected my work with a favorable outcome that I was working for myself. God led me to be a positive light to others and He would use it to His benefit. I may only be watering a seed that may not be ripe to harvest for years. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” Colossians 3:23

Have you ever felt God asked you to do something but it didn’t turn out the way you expected? How did you react? Discouraged? Disappointed? Doubted that you even heard God? How did you regain your trust in your feeling God’s guidance?

Choosing the Better Way

Distractions! They are everywhere. The world is a busy place and t often daily life can become chaotic. It takes a lot of “doing” to keep up with the demands of society. People want my time for church, civic organizations, youth activities, etc., etc..

Many of those distractions were put aside this past week as I took time to rest and allow my body to gain strength. While I was worrying if my choice may have disappointed some I remembered Mary and Martha in Luke 10:38-41. Martha was busy “doing” all the preparations expected of a hostess and Mary sat at Jesus’ feet. Of course, Martha was offended that Jesus would allow Mary to do nothing. Jesus sadly responded, “Mary was chosen what is better.”

Listening to Jesus in not “doing nothing.” It is God’s command. Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” He didn’t say that grew closer to Him by “doing” things for Him. I may have been doing good works in all the things that keep me busy but I wasn’t taking time to listen. My body grew weary of all the “doing” but so did my spirit.

One day I was ready my Bible and writing and I realized I was feeling stronger and was filled with joy. Was this what God wanted me to do? I believe it was. I was charging ahead on my own and not taking time to listen to God. Last week I sat with God’s word and let the Marthas in my life do all the work.

Have you ever felt you were doing good works to please people instead of God? How did you stop and listen for God’s guidance?