Sunday, August 2, 2009

Atta Boy!

Who doesn’t like a pat on the back? I have, many times, found myself basking in the light of praise and “atta boy’s” for things that seemed to be a big deal at the time. I was seeking the praise of man. When someone would shine a flashlight on me for something positive, I really got caught up in that. We all do, don’t we? But the glory of men quickly fades in the light of His glory. Its like shining a flashlight outside during the brightest part of the day.

How long I have sought identity in self through the eyes of others. I have found that seeking the praise of others is like trying to stand on quicksand. Not very stable.

Jesus, in His last days on earth, saw the foolishness of man in seeking praise of man. Although He never sought pats on the back, we can learn a valuable lesson from the way he was praised and heralded one day and thrown to the wolves just a few days later. The same people who praised Him, crucified Him. Matthew 21: 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed him shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna in the highest!” They were giving a huge pat on the back. And, like quicksand, the very people who gave praises on Sunday, turned on Him just a few days later. Luke 23: 18-21 With one voce they cried out, “Away with this man! Release Barabas to us!” Barabas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder. Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. But they kept shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Ever expereinced having someone "turn" on you who you thought "had your back?" Of course you have. We all have. And I am sure most of us have turned our backs on the same people we, at some point, gave praises to.

We must seek the glory of God. It is that simple. We must give all glory, all the time, to our Heavenly Father. If we seek praise for self or of self, we are trying to steal praise from Him. Pretty simple, isn’t it?

Father, forgive me when I have sought glory from man. It has been in vain and, most times, not been used to glorify You. I no longer care about what man thinks about me - as long as I am in Your will.