Who are you trying to please anyway?

Published 8:03 pm Saturday, December 29, 2018

By Karen Y. Stevens


Another Christmas is past, and the New Year is on its way.  

My church always does a three week fast in January to start the New Year off by putting God first.  

The fast is what you choose.  My husband and I usually do an abbreviated version of “the Daniel fast”; fruits, vegetables, and we incorporate fish, and chicken.  

We do this to show God that He is important to us by giving up one of the hardest things to give up – foods that we like.  

I could live on sweets all year, and give up the fruits and vegetables.  That’s a lot easier than the other way around.

Anyway, our Pastor stated that if you have an event during the three weeks, don’t just forgo the entire three weeks.  

Map out your calendar before you make the commitment to God.  Put in that you will be breaking the fast for that one event, and then get back on it.  This is not a plan to come up with an excuse to break the fast but to be able to do the fast with an event in between and still be loyal to God.  

Last year, I already had plans to go to a friend’s beach condo for a few days.  While I was away, I planned on breaking the fast, even though I was going to try and stick as close as possible to it.  

The problem with all this is that I told my friend I was on the “fast”.  First mistake. Then when I tried to explain to her, I was breaking the fast on purpose, she did not understand.  I really did not do a good job of presenting the fast to her. I told her in the middle of the stay, that I had a “loophole”.  Well, it appeared that I was cheating on God, and hence a bad example, and witness to her. Which, she promptly told all my other friends, bringing more humility to me.  

Sometimes, we are indirectly bad influences on other people, like I was.  

Last week, I wrote an article about Christmas.  I mentioned what a great influence Jesus had on His brothers and sisters.  In the past, I thought my influence would not be acceptable to those closest to me, because they see all sides of me, (like my friend did).

In Luke 2:24 it states, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in his hometown”.  

Jesus is talking about His ministry in His home-town because their unbelief was so great due to, they saw Him grow up and counted Him as a carpenter’s son; not the son of God.  

A lot of those closest to us, just count us as a friend, sister, brother, father, mother, etc.  They don’t see the God pleaser in us, or what God has mapped out for us. We are not perfect, even with God in our lives.  That’s why Jesus had to come and offer Himself, as the ultimate sacrifice.

Just keep trying to be a God pleaser in the new year.  

Even if you say or do the wrong thing that sometimes confuses others, it won’t confuse God.  And who are you trying to please anyway?


Karen Y. Stevens is the founder of the Orange County Christian Writers Guild