"To Please God"
We shall never get far in our relationship with God until we consciously and decisively determine that the matter involves His pleasure far more than our own.
"Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more" (I Thessalonians 4:1).
A black hole of despair awaits all who seek their own pleasure as the the goal and purpose of life. This includes all of Adam's fallen race, as infected by the devil's lie that "ye shall be as gods" (Genesis 3:5). The kind of false "god" referenced by Satan seeks his own blessedness rather than that of others. Conversely, the love of God for which we exist "seeketh not her own" (I Corinthians 13:5). To live for our Lord's pleasure therefore means that we worship and walk according to His character and nature, as enabled by His indwelling presence. "The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5). Thus, the Lord who redeemed us by the most unselfish act ever performed - the cross of the Lord Jesus - further rescues us by constituting His glory, will, and pleasure as our governing motivation. The joy of His others-centeredness increasingly becomes our own as we know and respond to His love.
Our Heavenly Father does not Himself act selfishly by working in us to please Him. He rather knows that our hearts were made to be governed by the same character whereby He lives and acts. Commanding and then enabling us to please Him thus means He works unselfishly even as He motivates us to live for His pleasure. He could grant to us no greater gift than to make us like Himself in character, nature, and way. Again, His indwelling presence and faithful working begins and continues the work of love that increasingly enables us to reflect our Lord's sublime unselfishness.
"And I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them."
Weekly Memory Verse(s)
"Without Me, ye can do nothing… I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
(John 15:5; Philippians 4:13)