So that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God...
Snap! This was the sound that was heard and the sting that was felt when one of my good friends decided to play tug-of-war with me with a bungee cord type set-up. Oh the fun we had and the laughs when the cord snapped, turned, and swiveled through the air. And yes...3,2,1 contact; that was the start of the cacophonous laughter that summer evening. While this game was all in fun there are many instances in life that unfortunately do not end in laughter but do cause us a great deal of pain.
We are free to serve Him!
Staying in the Game. Where do you find yourself in the tug-of-war game? Many times we have unspoken expectations placed upon us by others and even expectations that have been verbalized quite clearly. We seem to plod along not thinking too much about these expectations until we realize that we are unable to meet them. We have many choices along the way when dealing with and managing the expectations and demands of others. Perhaps you have encountered some who would never say this to you directly but, I want extra time from you, or I want you to make me feel better, I have to have your advice, You need to help my son or daughter succeed, You need to listen to me every time I have a problem, or we could sum up the previous statements into one concise statement: You need to meet my needs and meet my needs now. Do you find yourself facing these spoken or unspoken demands of others?
Serving the Lord Christ. The real question for us then becomes, whom do we serve? Certainly, even if we have done something to the "least of these" we have done it unto Him. (Matthew 25:40) However, when the expectations and demands of others exceed the expectations that the Father has for us we need to make a choice. We must choose whether we will "please" those who seem to be screaming or shouting the loudest or the One to whom we owe our allegiance and entire being.
Whatever you do, do your work heartily as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.
Living a life worthy of the Lord and pleasing Him in every way may require that the expectations of others remain unmet.