Leaving the Best to Do the Good

One of the things that amaze me the most about Jesus is how He always seemed to know where He should be. Some say that is because He was God and we should not live life with such clarity. I disagree. The Scriptures say that Jesus was tempted in every way yet without sin. If Jesus didn’t have same obstacles to faith that we have, then His acts would merely be God showing off instead of the Lord showing us how to live. How valuable would Jesus’ example be if there is no possible way for us to follow it?

Jesus had to wrestle with doubts and fears just like us. He had public pressure. Many tried to manipulate Him to do what they wanted. Jesus had to face the challenge of ministering to overwhelming need and scrutiny. Through it all, Jesus was not moved by the expectations of others. The will of the Father guided Jesus’ life and ministry.

How did He do it? What was His secret? I believe Jesus understood the key to living the best life possible. Jesus constantly abided in God and took time away to be expressly with the Father. He frequently went off into a quiet place to pray. The private disciples of Jesus led to His public ministry. Jesus avoided the traps of doing so many good things for only doing God’s best, and it ways His waiting on God that paid off in the end.

Jesus spent years growing in favor with God and man before entering public ministry. And even with crowds thronging around Him, He always took time alone to pray and stay focused deep in the Father’s love.

Right now, I am flooded by lots of “good” ministry opportunities. There is more need than I care to recount. But I should never be motivated by need. Sure, He had compassion on people and sought to remove the things that kept them from enjoying life with God. Jesus saw needs and responded, but He never lost sight of the goal in the process. Ultimately, the desire to please the Father and glorify God guided Jesus’ life.

I want to do what pleases God. And this wrestling over ministry opportunities just shows me that I need to spend more time abiding. I have to wait. The one thing that seems most like inaction can lead to the greatest blessings…if I will only believe that God’s ways are best.

God, help me. Give me strength to wait and the will to say no even to good things. Show me Your way, the best things, the best life. May I be free from the expectations of others and the desire to please man. Save me from ways that seem right. Guide me in the ways everlasting that I may live every moment for Your glory. Amen!

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