It is great when we try to please others, to an extent. When we please others by being Christ-like, we are fulfilling God's desire for us. When we try to please others for our selfish interests, then we are headed for disaster. Instead of honoring God with our kindness, we, in turn, become slaves to others. We let others control what we do and say. Instead of being God-pleasing, we try to be people pleasing.
Where do we draw the line when it comes to being kind to others? It is often hard to completely focus our attention and actions on what God wants for our life. To gain acceptance from others, we try to be people pleasers. We subject ourselves to disappointment, mean spirits and rejection. Our acts of kindness become short-lived, and we are left with an emptiness inside. Trying to make others happy never works in the long run. When we do things to please God, they will outlive the instant gratification that people here on earth receive.
Galatians 1:10 NASB “For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.”
What happens when we please others before God?
I remember struggling my entire life to please others. Putting your spouse, family and friends first seemed like the right thing to do. Somehow putting these people first in my life never made them happy or never made me happy. When I finally started putting God first, things began to change. You can show kindness and love to everyone, but it must be done in a Godly way. Striving to please God first, will lead to an abundance of love and respect for others.
We handle others differently when we do so in a Godly mindset. Thinking about how my actions and words honor God's kingdom first, will ultimately be sufficient to meet the needs of others here on earth. I am trying to teach this to my young children. When they struggle with their friends, I remind them to put God first, not their friend. It confused them at first, but after a little bit of time in the word, I think it connected. Hopefully, they fix their life struggles and relationships through the love of God instead of trying to fix things on their own.