Loud. Exciting. Energizing. That’s how I would describe my family reunion. Coming from a family with eight kids has it advantages; when we get together, it’s an immediate party. Brothers, sisters, Mom and my step-dad, nieces, nephews; a conglomerate all generating from the Martin family tree. This year was extra special. As the nieces and nephews grow older, they are starting to take leadership bringing their own flare for fun. It began with the “Family Awards”. Each child from the immediate family was recognized for their own gifting; in a silly way, of course. I won the award for the “Hostess with the Mostess”. I guess that comes from my willingness to have over this entire tribe whenever I can. I love having over all those I love and I also like being appreciated when it is all over.
Maybe that’s why Jesus’ words dug into my heart so deeply. “How can you believe if you accept praise from one another, yet make no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only God?” (John 5:44). Jesus cuts right to the chase…”What are you living for, Lynn? You say you’re living for an audience of One – Me, but is it true?” You know the best measurement. Asking myself this question. How do I respond when no one applauds; when no one notices? Do I pout? Do I feel sorry for myself? or am I content because I didn’t do it for others anyway?
Saturday, I read these words in Sun Stand Still by Steven Furtick “When you want what God wants for the reasons he wants it, you’re unstoppable.” There is a lot packed into this sentence. “When you want what God wants.” What does God want anyway? He wants to be glorified. He wants others to come to Him. He wants us. “…for the reasons he wants it.” We may want the same thing that God wants, but that is not enough. We have to want it for the same reason He wants it.
Do we have goals in ministry? Do we want our kids to follow Christ? Do we want our husbands to lead our families? Why? Why do we want it? Do we want it so we look good or so He looks good?
Father, purify my motives: to obtain the praise that comes from the only God. May the praises of others not be an idol in my life. I choose today to find joy in you; in you alone. Complete me, Jesus! Amen
Wow! I can really relate here. I love doing for others and taking care of everthing…but…what would I do if noone applauded? What if noone said thank you? Wow…thank you Lynn for shining some light here for me. Have a great day!