"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."
To expand on the issue of people pleasing a little more we are going to look at how it can affect the decisions we make for Christ. Have you ever been afraid to take a step forward because of how others may view you? Afraid of how they may take what it is you are about to do? So many times in life, we come to a crossroads in which we must make a decision that can influence our life and the lives of others in tremendous ways. It may mean going against the grain, ruffling some feathers and walking alone enduring some obstacles along the way. It means traveling down a road that others may not have journeyed. It means that we may displease those around us and this may be disheartening for many including myself.
When we choose to obey God, that road is not always easy. Sometimes it means giving up the things we love or love doing. It means that we no longer focus on what it is that may bring us pleasure or happiness because at the time those things may be merely a distraction from what our one true focus should be, God. Taking that first step down this road can be scary and extremely lonely. Now, at first, you may have those that say, I will go with you but as the journey begins and the road gets rocky, it may not be long before they abandon you. This then leads us to question if we even headed in the right direction to begin with and we find ourselves questioning God. Now, the questioning begins because you have headed down a road that Satan does not want you on because you are being obedient to God. Suddenly, there are things in this road that begin attacking you, your family, your finances, your ministries, your relationships and the list goes because Satan wants you to give up and run the other way. Instead of getting discouraged, we should be encouraged because when Satan attacks we know we have entered into a battle and have become warriors for our King. You see, when we begin fighting for the Lord, Satan is going to be there with opposing forces trying to end the battle you have begun. We can be encouraged knowing that God has already been down this road. In fact, He prepared the way and He has already had the victory over every circumstance in which we will encounter. If we are relying on Him and His strength then He makes it possible for us to endure the journey ahead. The road may seem scary but He is a big God who can defeat all those who long to tear us down and destroy the work He began in us. God is mighty to save and He is right there to lift us out of whatever danger we may encounter along that path and He promises to protect us not just from THE enemy but from the enemies who surround us in our everyday lives. Because of His great love for us, we have no need to fear anything that crosses our path because God's love is perfect and He IS our Mighty Conqueror.
The Lord is my Light and my Salvation
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the Stronghold of my life
Of whom shall I be afraid?
When evil men advance against me
To devour my flesh,
When my enemies and my foes attack me,
They will stumble and fall.
Satan wants to see us defeated but with God, the victory can and will be ours if we trust Him in ALL our circumstances and in this He takes great delight. In the end, when we have made it past these obstacles, He rejoices over us with singing because we were faithful in our following of Him. When we choose to please Him and Him alone, He blesses us beyond measure and offers to us His unending grace.
"Father thank you for preparing the way as I travel down the road you laid out for me. Remind me that you always there to protect me because You know what lies ahead and You have already won the victory of it all. To You alone, may I always be found faithful and obedient to Your will for my life. May I not get caught in the trap of trying to satisfy those around me but instead live to honor and satisfy You. Thank You for blessing my life and extending Your grace to me."