How do we live pleasing and acceptable to God? How do we live a life that brings glory to Him when we feel so very far away from the mark? I personally have spent many years wavering in a place of trying to be pleasing or working to be acceptable. These years just produced frustration and uncertainty about whether I would ever be “good enough”. One day God started speaking to me about lifting my gaze. Honestly at first I didn’t understand what that meant. As I prayed I began to see I was always looking at what I could do, what steps I could take to reach an acceptable position. My heart was in the right place in that I wanted to be acceptable to see God receive glory. So often as a child we long for our parents to say those things that endorse us, like “I am so proud of you”, “you did great” etc. In order to hear those words we strive to earn them. We tend to carry this over in the relating to our Heavenly Father too. It is a battle that goes all the way back to the garden. Eve was confronted with an opportunity to believe what God said about her but she was looking at her own view of her worth. She rationalized that it was a good thing to want to be like Him and in so doing she abdicated her position, she failed to realize she was already pleasing, loved and fully accepted by God. She was already made in His image she didn’t need to take any action other than to realize who He was and that what He says is enough. God had already chosen her.
When I felt like God told me to lift my gaze I realized that, just like Eve, my focus was on me. I was so centered on what I did, how I could become pleasing. Since this revelation I have begun to ask God to widen my gaze, to stretch my horizon so that I have a bigger image of who He is. Romans 8:14-15 states “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children than heirs – heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”
God has adopted us which means that He reached down and specifically chose us and established us within His family. We are loved, accepted and fully pleasing just as we are. He didn’t accept us so that we could continue to try to earn what He has already given. He chose us and when we accept that gift of salvation we become joint heirs with Christ. It means that we have access to all the things that Jesus did. We become identified with the journey to the cross and the sufferings of Jesus and all those expectations and self-focused ideas of becoming pleasing are crucified with Christ. When we accept the precious gift of salvation our adoption into His family is complete and He shall receive the glory. Let’s lift our gaze to realize what a vast, marvelous and amazingly loving Father has adopted us as His children and allow His beautiful nature to shine by walking in the revelation that we are pleasing and acceptable in His eyes.