Pleasing to God (Colossians 3:20)

The scriptures inform us that the action of children obeying their parents is well pleasing to the Lord. 

Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. (Colossians 3:20)

It does not say that children who obey their parents are well pleasing to the Lord, but that obeying parents is pleasing to him. As a child of God which positionally puts you in Christ, God is always pleased with you. However, there may be things that you do that may be displeasing to the him.

This can be difficult for some to understand. They are locked into the thought that if a person does something that is displeasing to the Lord, then the Lord must also be displeased with them. 

What we must understand is that God does not exist in linear time. This means that God is not stuck in time like you and me only moving forward from one day to the next. Time does not affect him: he can see from the beginning to the end and from the end to the beginning.

My children, as all children, have done things that are pleasing to me and also displeasing. Some of these actions were faults and others we sins. However when I look at them and assess whether or not I am pleased with them, I am able to see and recall much of their past and even with their faults and sins, I can still truly be pleased with them.

God looks at us from eternity future. The complete workings of salvation have been accomplished and from that standpoint as he looks at you in today’s time, you are pleasing to him. You are pleasing to God because of Christ and whenever he sees you, he sees you in Christ. The actions you do may be displeasing, but you are still pleasing to him. If you remain in disobedience and continue to act in ways that displease the Lord, he may chasten you. He will do this because he takes pleasure in you, and he cannot allow you to ruin your life.

Remember, your relationship with God is completely based on the works of Christ. There is nothing that you can do that will make you any more or less acceptable to him.


It’s All About Christ (Psalm 25:7)

Many years ago when I had first come to Christ, I was working in a steel mill in eastern Pennsylvania. I was working at the electric furnace and met another Christian, Butch, with whom I fellowshipped daily. One day, he asked how I was doing. I was not joyful as I had been on previous days. I had recently sinned and had lost my joy. My life was overcome with guilt and I was being pulled down by the enemy. The further my heart sank, the more I was convinced that God was mad at me and I no longer had his love. It was at that point that Butch pulled me to the side and reminded me that the Christian life was not about me, but that it was all about Christ.
Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to thy mercy remember thou me for thy goodness’ sake, O Lord. (Psalms 25:7)As we talked, I began to understand that my life could never be lived to the standard of being acceptable to God and that him accepting me would always be based on his mercy and loving kindness. For me, confession was still needed, but that would never warrant acceptance. Even when I confessed, I knew that being acceptable and pleasing in his sight would be based on his mercy, loving kindness and goodness.

So many people are trapped into trying to repent, confess or surrender enough to reach a point of acceptance. What they fail to see is that because of God’s mercy and goodness, he accepts us and then gives us the ability to repent, confess and surrender.

If your Christianity focuses on you and your performance, then you have it all backwards. Take the advice from my friend, Butch who told me many years ago, “It’s all about Christ! It’s all about Christ!”

How Can I Approach God?

As a kid, one of the greatest difficulties I faced was approaching my father and trying to get him to do something for me.  It seemed like I always faced some type of resistance and a troubling discussion.  Those childhood experiences affected my perspective of my Heavenly Father.  It wouldn’t take a counselor to recognize that as a believer in Christ, I would be convinced that my father in heaven would react the same way to my requests.

It took some time to overcome, but God eventually was able to get through to me and teach me about our relationship and how to approach him.  I finally recognized that he wants me to approach him and that there is a way to enter into his presence.

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. (Psalms 100:4)

In this Psalm, the writer uses the analogy of entering a king’s castle to teach us how to approach God.  The first step in approaching God should be to express thanks for whatever he is doing in your lives.  This can be very difficult for some of us, because there are many things that God allows into our lives, which are part of his sovereign plan that we may see as very unpleasant.  In order for us to be thankful, we will need to submit our will to him.  That is part of the great commandment loving God with all your heart, soul and mind.  When you express thanks to God, you enter through the gates and approach his presence.  You will not be as close as you could be, but you will be in his presence.  

After expressing thanks, you should praise God.  Praising God is done by declaring how wonderful God is and saying it to him in your own words and from your heart.  When you do this, you have entered into the court of his presence.  Once you enter this place, stay there, fellowship with him, make your petitions known to him and enjoy the splendor that you were created to experience.

Your Christian life was meant to be enjoyed.  It does not mean that all of life will be enjoyable, but regardless of what circumstances we face, we can enjoy God in the midst of them.