Friday, February 23, 2007

Seeking God's Praise

No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by God’s Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.
Romans 2:29 NLT

Seeking God's praise. That sounds counter to most of what I've been taught. Shouldn't it be us who are praising God rather than seeking God's praise?

I guess it's how you look at it. A person who actively tries to gain the praise of their peers by wearing the latest fashion/having the latest gadgets/driving the right car, is more concerned with how others perceive them, whereas a child who does their best to follow their parents rules, who tries to go the extra mile, be on there best behavior is only looking for one thing:

Their parents praise.

But praise in this form is deeper, more permanent, it's love.

But what of a changed heart, how does that occur?

Is it by making the decision to follow what has been asked of us, to the best of our ability, going to achieve a changed heart?

Possibly not straight away, but if we adopt such an attitude, and stick to it with a cheerful existence, then surely our hearts will be changed, and in time we will receive God's praise.

But how does God praise us?

'This is my Son who I am pleased with' booming down from heaven seems a little unlikely for most people, but I believe God's praise can come from other sources.

My wife I believe received God's praise last night at Cell Group. She was complimented on how well she ran Kids Church last week by Vania. But it wasn't sought after praise, it was an honest compliment, not born out of conversation, but from the heart of one who loves God to another.

Rather than a booming voice from heaven, it was the quite voice of God through a human vessel that praise my wife.

We were all on Holy ground without realising it and God was there.

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