Many know that God is offendable. But is God pleasable? The answer is yes!
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A parent who loves their baby can be pleased when it simply coos and squeaks, when it grabs a toy, rolls over, sits up, or takes a first step. Many parents are easy to please. It is a slander to think that God is hard to please.
Before our son was born I had a troubling question; “Will I love him?” I had never met him. Would I find him lovable, have the capacity to love or come up short? At his appearing the doubts vaporized. I loved Brian immediately – before he hit a home run, did well in school, took out the garbage or milked the goats. He was mine. He was a wonder. And he was easy to love. My pleasure with him only increases as I behold his tiny and great accomplishments.
Every sincere Saint hopes to hear, “Well done good and faithful servant.” The conscientious Christian, focused on their failings and flaws, may forget that Father God is pleasable. They wonder if their flaws will disqualify them from hearing the “Well done.”
The sober truth of Scripture is that God is a righteous judge. Each of us will stand to give account of our lives for our thoughts and actions. Our Lord even weighs our motives. Each of us should tremble over the holiness and justice of God. That weighty truth has a counter balance. It is the mercy of Christ at the atonement seat, and the pleasability of God. God’s grace in Jesus our Savior covers the sins of the humble believer, giving the Father the ability to look for the smallest excuse to be pleased and proud.
We have a schnauzer named Smitty. I’m teaching him to sit, stay, lay down, get up, get down, fetch and give, jump and roll over. When he tries to respond to my commands I affirm him. I do it often. He’s a smart dog and catches on. Perhaps he could use a better master. My point is that I choose to be pleased with the smallest effort, and I affirm with pats, vocalizations and treats. I pray I may be as eager to please God as Smitty is to please me.
What I know is that God is better at affirming me than I am with my dog. Could He be affirming us more than we know? We know there is an ultimate blessing of “Well done.” But don’t you think there is a moment by moment “Well done” going on in the Spirit when we are making the smallest obediences and eagerly seeking to please Him? Perhaps if we were more sensitive we would hear our Lord’s affirmations and at-a-boy or girls frequently. Perhaps our worries, “Am I doing this right? Am I a flunky?” prevent us from hearing His loving approval.
When one of our tiny children learned to tumble, twirl in dance, bake their first muffin, or squeak well in the band, approximating the right note, we are pleased and say, “Well done!” Our Lord Jesus said, “If you being evil know how to give good gifts to your children [in this case a praise or affirmation] how much more will your Father…”
Do you know you can find dozens of verses about the pleasability of our loving Father? Reflect on these:
OUR WORDS AND THOUGHTS CAN PLEASE GOD
Ps 19:14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Ps 104:34 May my meditation be pleasing to him, as I rejoice in the LORD. PRAISE CAN PLEASE HIM
Ps 69:30-31 I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. This will please the LORD more than an ox, more than a bull with its horns and hoofs.
OUR FATHER IS PLEASED WHEN WE KEEP HIS WORD
Prov 22:17-18 Pay attention and listen to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach,for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips.
JUSTICE, MERCY AND HUMILITY PLEASE GOD
Mic 6:8 He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
PRESENTING OUR LIVES IN WORSHIP PLEASES GOD
Rom 12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship.
RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY PLEASE THE FATHER
Rom 14:16-18 Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil. For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men.
GIVING MATERIAL GIFTS CAN PLEASE THE LORD
Phil 4:18 I have received full payment and even more; I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God.
CARRING FOR YOUR FAMILY PLEASES THE LORD
1 Tim 5:4 But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God.
A FAITHFUL WALK WITH GOD IS PLEASING
Heb 11:5-6 By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
SHARING WITH OTHERS PLEASES GOD
Heb 13:16 And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.
FIND OUT WHAT PLEASES THE LORD
Paul said in Ephesians 5:10 “… find out what pleases the Lord.” Once we discover this we can get active and do our best to create pleasure in the heart of our Heavenly Papa. What if we discover pleasing God is easier than we thought?
HAVE A DETERMINATION TO PLEASE GOD
1 Thess 4:1 Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more.
John 5:30 for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.
1 Thess 2:4 We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts.
PRAYERS THAT WE MAY PLEASE GOD
Heb 13:20-21 May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Col 1:10 And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God
In the wonderful and terrible days in which we live, learn what pleases the Lord, and resolve to create pleasure in your Father’s heart!
Steven C Johnson
Landing Strip Enterprises