Sunday, February 22, 2009
Making Mud Pies
The sermon at church today encouraged us to serve an audience of one...doing the right things for the right reasons. A sermon like this does make you question why you do certain things. Do our acts of kindness or our service (ministries) fulfill a need for approval, keep our egos fortified? When we serve, do find ourselves feeling frustrated when no one tells us how helpful, wonderful, smart, talented, giving-fill in the blank- we are?
It boils down to this: our reward comes from whom we serve. If we seek man's pleasure then his words are our reward. If we seek God's pleasure our reward is in Heaven. Hmmm... temporary or everlasting? What am I after? If we do things for the right reasons we aren't offended when others don't recognize our greatness. If we do things quietly, just letting our lights shine out of love for God, then we are doing things for the right reasons, for the right rewards.
Pastor Dean used a quote from C.S.Lewis that struck me. Lewis likened our desire for man's praise to a child making mud pies in the slum, content with this, when what the child is really being offered is a holiday by the sea. OK, now I'll be the first to admit I Loved Making Mud Pies in the Holler! BUT, if I had realized I passed up a chance for a trip to the beach I would have been put out with myself.
Think about it. Man's praise is like mud pies...in my mind fun while it lasted but oh the mess it made...and if you didn't have indoor plumbing, oh how long the mud stayed. Didn't feel so good dried and cracked on the skin you missed as you swiped over it with a cold washcloth.
Oh how easily pleased we are by man.
My prayer is that I find my significance in Christ alone...and you as well. We certainly won't please all people all the time (trust me, I've spent years learning this the hard way with many sleepless nights) so why not just try to please One...God.
May you find the center of His will and live there.