Whose approval do you crave?

Who in your life has the most influence over your behavior? The way in which you answer that question will show whom you are really working for. Is it your parents? your friends? your coworkers? your boyfriend or girlfriend? your boss?

I hope you answered, “None of the above.” I hope you would say that you crave God’s approval most of all. That seems obvious for a Christian, doesn’t it? Obvious to say, maybe, but hard to do. We all suffer from occasional spiritual amnesia. We forget that we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works. We forget that we are his people, bought with the blood of the Son. We forget that it is he who will evaluate our lives in the grand judgment at the end of time.

It’s never too late to refocus. “I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God” (Romans 12:1). Think how patient and forgiving God has been with you. Let his mercy spur you on to give your life back to him, as though you were a fragrant, sweet sacrifice to him, to his agenda, to his glory.

What would God think of how you spent today? Are you hungry for his “Attaboy!” or “Attagirl!”? What are you ashamed of? As you make your plans for tomorrow, what would God like to see in your words and actions? What in your life needs to stop? What in your life needs to increase?

Pastor Mark Jeske has been bringing the Word of God to viewers of Time of Grace since the program began airing in late 2001. A Milwaukee native, Pastor Jeske has served as the senior pastor at St. Marcus, a multicultural congregation on Milwaukee’s near north side since 1980. In addition, he is the author of six books and dozens of devotional booklets on various topics.

 

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