My friend and I attended a talent show a few weeks ago. Rumor spread that this would be a great event. Singers filed on the stage displaying their best performance as they chose a song to delight the audience. But deep down, they coveted the first prize.
Great Songs, Beautiful Voices
But unexpectedly, one of the contestants gripped the mic and began his song. Then he paused and pulled out a harmonica. With gusto, he slid his lips from side to side, creating contagious melodies that made us all sway and tap our feet. Then he followed up with the rest of the song with effusive passion, bringing a glorious ending to his performance.
The crowd jumped to their feet, cheered, whistled and roared with applause.
Nothing extraordinary—all he did was to take an extra step, do something different, add a special flair and move beyond the ordinary singing.
You and I know that deep inside, we also want to do that extra-special thing in life. That feat in our journey that others would recognize as important, significant and worth noticing. Maybe not for the masses crowded around us, but maybe just for our simple, personal satisfaction.
But in the audience of life, God is also watching. He's observing our moves, motives and desires. And the good news? Contrary to human expectations, He doesn't expect us to pull out a harmonica or perform extraordinarily to please others
Instead, He wants a simple servant heart, committed and true. In the midst of sorrow, He wants our trust. When answers don't come, He still longs for us to trust Him. And when life turns dark, He simply wants us to trust in Him for the outcome.
He Expects Us to ...
... love Him, trust and lean on Him. His demands are simple. We are the ones who make them complicated. We want to reach success, but He wants us to succeed in trusting Him first. We want a nice house, but He wants us to house His promises in our hearts. We want a trouble-free life, but even when trouble abounds, He wants us to delight in the freedom of His ways.
We're tempted to perform, but He wants us to instead find purpose in Him.
We sweat trying to please, but He doesn't expect grandeur, just gratitude because His applause is ready when we simply "trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and practice faithfulness." He calls out the instruction: "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart. ... Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him" (Psalm 37:3-4, 7a).
Pray With Me
Father, show me the silent place in Your presence. The place where I don't have to perform, prove anything or measure my work with the world's gauge. Grant me contentment while I wait for Your next calling. I ask this in the name of Your Son, Jesus.
Whom are you trying to please these days?
Janet Perez Eckles is an international speaker and the author of four books. She has helped thousands conquer fear and bring back joy.
This article originally appeared at janetperezeckles.com.
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