While Carter napped this afternoon, I spent some time reading Ephesians 4 and 5. Paul was telling the church at Ephesus how they needed to live. He reminded them that they were no longer darkness, but light. They were to abandon their old way of life and live in newness. Lots of instructions of how to achieve this new life were given throughout the passage but one little phrase caught my attention and held it. “…and find out what pleases the Lord.”
I know the things that please my friends and family. I try hard to remember their likes and dislikes and to honor those on a regular basis. But do I know what pleases God? I mean, in general (all the Sunday school answers) I can tell you what I think would make God happy. I know I need to follow His commands and live life like I ought to. I know He’s not a fan of sin. But have I ever taken the time to really find out what makes God happy?
I started thinking about my relationship with God. When I pray, I bring Him my requests and I thank Him. When I read my bible I ask for insight, understanding, and freshness. When I journal, I share with Him my struggles and insecurities conversationally. When I sing songs, I praise Him and thank Him for what He does in my life. But am I on a deliberate quest to try and find what pleases God?
I can argue that yes, I try to honor Him with my actions and attitudes. I try to obey His commands. But is that the same as intentionally seeking what pleases Him? The difference to me is kind of like knowing that my husband likes sandwiches from Subway, so I stop by and pick a random sandwich off the list and bring it home for lunch. I know in general what he likes, and I know he will eat anything I bring home. But if I really wanted to please my husband, then I would know that he likes a 12 inch cold cut with pepperjack and everything on it except cucumbers, green peppers, and onions along with mayo, mustard, salt, pepper, oil, and vinegar. See the difference?
I think deliberately trying to find what pleases God demands a more intentional type of searching. It will require paying attention to little things I learn and notice about God and His character and making mental notes each day. The more time I spend with Him, the more I will come to understand His nature. Figuratively speaking, I want to know what God wants on His Subway sandwich, you know?
Let’s take some time to find out what pleases God. As you find things that please Him and you want to share, I’d love to hear from you! I’ll do the same! Happy hunting!