Pleasing Heaven While Living on Earth
There is an innate trait, and quality that everyone of us share; and, that is, to be accepted, and pleasing to others. Whether it be to our mate, our employer, our classmates, our family, or our friends, we, whether we admit it or not, seek to "fit in", and please those around us.
I once read an old fable which told of an elderly man who was traveling with a boy on a donkey. As they walked through the village, the man was leading the donkey, while the boy walked behind. The townspeople said that the old man was a fool for not riding the donkey, so to please them, he climbed on the animal's back. When they came to the next village, the people said the old man was cruel to let the child walk while he enjoyed the ride. So, to please them, he got off, and set the boy on the donkey's back. In the third village, people accused the child for being lazy for making the old man walk, and they suggested that both of them ride. So, the man climbed on again, and they continued on. In the fourth village, the townspeople were severely upset at the cruelty to the donkey because he was made to carry two people. The frustrated man then got off, and was last seen carrying the donkey down the road.
While we may smile, and laugh at that story, the point is clear: while we try to please everyone, we find, that most of the time, we don't please anyone! Blaine Pascal, wrote in his Pensees, "All men seek acceptance. This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hang themselves on it!" 1
The verse before us, this morning, spells out rather clearly, that while we ought not set out to offend, or obstruct people, our number one priority is to please God. John Piper, making a slight alteration to the ...
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