Monday, June 12, 2017
Choosing a Horse
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel…Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” Galatians 1:6, 10.
Paul, who had previously persecuted both the people of God and the message of Christ, was living out his days sharing the gospel. He had spent time with the Galatians and had worked diligently explaining God’s truths. He had moved on to other places but apparently received word that false doctrines had infiltrated the church at Galatia. He communicated his shock at how quickly their hearts turned to pleasing the people who were giving them a new set of doctrines that contradicted God’s message. He explained to them that they have one of two paths to pursue – the approval of man or the approval of God.
I remember when we went to Bruce’s dad for advice of whether to start a business or for Bruce to accept employment from a company. Bruce laid out both paths with their benefits and opportunities before his dad. His father looked Bruce straight in the eyes and told him, ‘Son, you have a foot on two horses…you must choose a horse and ride.’ We are not left to our own choosing in our lives as Christians. God has given us the horse to ride and it’s not the approval of man. He has laid out His heart on every subject throughout the Bible. ‘Many Christians are kept from new potential in Christ because the fear of man controls our hearts. We don’t parent in strength because we fear not being loved. We make decisions based on pleasing people we’re afraid to disappoint. We make pleasing people more important than pleasing God. The opinions of others guide our choices. Co-dependency is fearing we have to be attached to a certain person. Every time we worry more about pleasing man more than pleasing God, we are sacrificing the potential growth, potential fruit, and potential freedom God wants to bring into our lives.’ Redeemed, Angela Thomas-Pharr, p. 171.s
Based on the benefits that could be ours, I would think that it should be easy ‘to choose that horse and ride. And yet it is not for I have spent a lifetime making the wrong choice. Only through the strength and power of God are we equipped to choose Him. Seeking God’s approval over man’s, isn’t a one-time choice, it is a constant awareness of the crossroads at every turn.
“To fear the Lord means putting God in putting God in His rightful place in our lives. That means God must become bigger than people.” Redeemed, p. 171.