By Ron Merrel
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 walk humbly with your God.
Today people tend to look out for and think of themselves first. We often ask, “What does God expect from me?” That’s a great question! Are you frustrated and burned out from trying hard to please God? People have tried all kinds of ways to please God, but He has made His wishes clear: He wants HIS people to be just, merciful, and to walk humbly with Him.
Israel responded to God’s requests by trying to appease Him with sacrifices, hoping then He would be satisfied with them. Sacrifices and other religious rituals (going to church, listening to sermons, tithing, reading your Bible, praying, giving your time, etc.) — which are all good things — aren’t enough: GOD WANTS CHANGED LIVES! Consider the life of Saul (Paul) who was a Pharisee before his conversion on the Damascus road. Paul was very religious. He was a good Pharisee who knew the Law and sincerely believed that the Christian movement was dangerous to Judaism. As a result of this belief, he persecuted Christians without mercy. On the Damascus road he met Jesus Christ and his life was never the same again! God’s ultimate purpose is for you and me to be conformed to the likeness of the Lord Jesus who is fair, just, merciful, and humble. God wants us to become living sacrifices (Romans 12:1-2), not just doing religious deeds, but living rightly (Jeremiah 4:4; Hebrews 9:14).
In your efforts to please God, examine these areas of your life on a regular basis:
- Are you fair and just in all of your dealings with other people?
- Do you show mercy to those who have wronged you?
- Are you learning to be humble?
Father, we thank You and praise You that You do not leave us as You found us. Your will is for us to be conformed to the likeness of Your Son, the Lord Jesus. As a result, it is Your will that we are fair and just in all our dealings with other people and that we show mercy to all with whom we come in contact. Finally, You desire that we walk humbly with You, acknowledging that You are GOD and we are not. We pray that Your Holy Spirit will guide and instruct us how to make this a reality in our lives. We humbly ask You for these things for Your glory. AMEN!