See What I Did?
By Cheryl McCloud
Easter and the arrival of spring bring to my mind new beginnings. There's a freshness that comes when I reflect on what Christ did for me with His death on the cross.
I'm new in Him; I cast off those shrouds of what I used to be and stand proud as a daughter of the King ... until I remember that yesterday's dirty dishes are still in the sink, I forgot to pray this morning, I meant to call a friend going through a hard time, and I can't recall today's devotion because I read it as I was going over in my mind everything I had to get done today.
And what about getting a little appreciation for all those things?
I know I’m not alone in this. Women especially spend hours every day -- at work and at home -- doing for others.
Whether it's a special project at work we spent hours on, or even the "regular" daily duties that we pour ourselves into … we often strive to give more than what's expected, caring to give the customer, our boss or the company we work for our very best.
At home, we work hard to provide nutritious meals, clean clothes, and a tidy home for our families. We balance schedules. Make appointments. Handle sickness. And when the unexpected happens – which can arrive daily or weekly! – we’re masters on coming up with a new game plan within minutes (or even seconds)!
Then we wait.
I don't expect effusive praise for what I do, but a heartfelt thank you, an email saying the effort I made was appreciated goes a long way.
Even a hug would feel good, an acknowledgement that what I did was noticed. Sometimes you just want people to see what you’ve done and recognize it.
But ... (you knew there was a but coming, didn't you?!) God knew our hearts and minds are likely to go in that direction.
“Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.” -- Galatians 1:10
“Their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward.” -- 1 Corinthians 3:13-14
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven” -- Matthew 6:1
“But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” -- Matthew 6:6
When we look toward people for approval, that's a dangerous path we're heading down.
God wants us to look toward him for approval. Problem is, the more I look for people to notice and say something, the more my focus gets pulled away from Him.
Sometimes I need that reminder – which comes only when I spend daily time with Him – that He always notices and His approval is all I need.