“Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart.” -Ephesians 6:6 (ESV)
We want to be liked. For a variety of reasons we feel the need to please others whatever the cost. It gives us a sense of worth and usefulness when we are appreciated by others. At times, we may believe that it is necessary to maintain the peace and the status quo. However, in our effort to not jeopardize our position, we compromise our devotion to Christ. When we find ourselves seeking to align our attitudes and values to those of others, wanting to be loved and accepted by them, we have failed to take into consideration one important fact. Human opinion is subject to change and human existence itself is fleeting. If we have placed our worth and value in these, we will find ourselves having not only turned against the principles of Christ, but have brought into our lives much grief and pain whilst gaining nothing in return.
When we have accepted Christ in our heart; believing in His redemptive sacrifice and allowing Him to work out His righteousness in our lives, our worth and value is found in His eternal and perfect love. If our worth is found in anyone else, then we have exchanged the truth of God and the freedom we have in Him, for a deceptive slavery that seeks to keep us under its thumb. This is not to say we must be always antagonistic towards people. On the contrary, the Scriptures tell us to live in harmony with one another so that Christ may shine forth through us. But if we have become more concerned about pleasing those around us than serving Christ who is above them, then we are bowing down before an idol that will enslave us to our detriment. When we obey others knowing that in our service we serve Christ, we will be able to serve with a whole-hearted joy while remembering that we are not bound to man. We will be able to stand for His truth and justice knowing that our foundation is secure in Him.
“Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”