We all spend time thinking about what God expects or desires from us. We often think He wants us to be good. He wants us to be kind – kinder than we currently manage to be. He wants us to be patient and understanding. He wants us to treat others well. He wants us to use our resources wisely.
Since we think of all these things God wants us to do or be we can end up thinking that God is not actually very pleased with us. We know we can do better, and we know God knows we can do better, so we think He isn’t pleased with us and we feel guilty for not doing and being better.
Sometimes we can get buried with a load of guilt and expectations. We can get so discouraged that we feel there is no hope for us at all. We will never measure up so we might as well give up even trying.
I’ve learned that even my best efforts will never be enough to please God. But that doesn’t discourage me, that releases me! Since nothing I can do will ever measure up I need to release myself from the pressure of trying to be good enough or better than I am. You see, before God I have nothing to offer, but through what Jesus has already DONE FOR ME, I can stand before God fully and completely accepted.
I have sinned. I don’t deserve to have a relationship with God. There is nothing I can do to ‘fix’ my past sins and nothing I can do to make myself do better in all the areas I fall short. But Jesus has done it. He willingly did what I wasn’t able to do and that has made all the difference.
Because Jesus took my sin, died, but didn’t stay dead, He invited me to a relationship with Him and He has covered all the costs! I must simply accept what He has already done.
Paul travelled all around the known world of his time seeking to let everyone know this simple, yet profound message. His message wasn’t very complicated:
You should turn from worthless things and turn to the Living God, who made heaven and earth and everything in them. He left you with a lot of evidence of Himself and His goodness. For instance, He sends you rain and good crops and gives you food and joyful hearts. Acts 14
I think the same message still holds for us today. All God wants from us is for us to turn from the worthless things we spend our lives pursuing. He wants us to turn to Him and seek to know and understand Him and surrender our lives to His direction.
It’s simple. Not easy, but simple.
Often surrender involves progressive steps. We can’t wait till we are ‘perfect’ till we approach God – because we will NEVER be perfect. We just have to start where we are and turn and approach Him, ready to learn what He has already done for us and what He desires for us.
Day 7 Encouraging people to Seek Jesus: 30 ways in 30 days