If the World Stops Watching You – Ready for a Challenge?

Mind if I ask you a few questions? Good, you know me. Or, maybe you don’t. So here’s the deal. I love to ask questions. It keeps people on their toes, me included. So here goes. What would you do if the world stopped watching you? Seriously. If you knew that not a person in the world saw, or heard, anything you do, or don’t do, or say, or don’t say, or think or neglect to think, would you do the right thing anyway? If the world stopped watching you, would you do what God’s calling you to do anyway? If you couldn’t get any attention, any validation, any affirmation or confirmation, any acceptance from the world around you, any opinion whatsoever, would you do God’s will anyway? Challenging questions, eh? Maybe not at first glance, but think about it.

I bet if we’re all thoroughly honest with ourselves, we would look inside our hearts and see that our motives aren’t always as pure as they should be, or even as they may seem. Did you know that the Bible talks about man pleasers? The Bible also speaks of God pleasers. We’re not supposed to be doing God’s will for the sake of the world.We’re supposed to do it for the sake of the Lord. But if the truth be told, some of us need to purge from our hearts wrong motives so we can start living with the right, pure motives. Tough stuff, isn’t it? I know it is for me, but then in my case the Lord has given me the perfect opportunity to get the motives in my heart in order.

When I recently bemoaned my current circumstances to a beloved friend, and mentor of mine, a big sister in the Lord in fact, she helped me to turn around my thinking and see the blessings in what I was upset about. See, I have no family, no husband, no fiance, no boyfriend, no social life, no friends my age nearby who like to get together, no job with co-workers, no staff, and, well, you get the point, don’t you? So the bottom line is I could get away with a heck of a lot.

In fact, to top it all off, my three books have barely sold, my online writing gets virtually no feedback, the phone has barely been ringing, I’m not currently preaching to any groups of people, and, well, you get the point even more, don’t you? So what’s the deal? My precious friend shared with me just the right words to help me to remember that I have an amazing opportunity to keep my focus on the Lord, and to trust, and to do, His will. Regardless of the fact it seems nobody is watching. Will I do the right thing anyway? But guess what? The world might not be watching, but guess who is. The Lord! And my greatest hope, and desire, is to love, and to serve, and to please, my Father in heaven – regardless of what the world has to say about me. Talk about a  phenomenal opportunity to examine my heart – and actions – to ensure I’m seeking to do the Lord’s will for His glory and not for the praises of man. Not for the world, but for the Lord! And I am happy to report that my love for Him is ever growing, and that my desire to please Him is burgeoning, too.

If you knew not a single person in the universe was watching you, what would your life look like? Would you live your life for the Lord? Okay, what if the entire universe were watching you right now, would you live your life for the Lord anyway? Is your desire to do God’s will contingent on the people of this world, or on your love for the Lord? It sort of makes you think, doesn’t it? But I believe questions like these aren’t just designed to make us think. I think these kind of questions are made to bring confirmation from the Lord when we are on track, conviction from Him where we need to change, and to bring us to the feet of the Lord in confession of where we fall short – with a desire to grow forward. May the Lord convict, change, strengthen, and equip you as He leads you forward in your life’s journey – ever perfecting His love in you as He provokes you to grow in His image.

Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the heart. Proverbs 21:2 ESV

For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10

“…but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts. 1 Thess 2:4

1“Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.
2“Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 3But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
5“And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 6But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
7“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Matthew 6:1-8 ESV
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