A month ago, I was preparing to share at my grandma's funeral and I was thinking quite a bit about the audience. As I planned to speak about the hope I have in Christ and read a few verses from the Bible, thoughts went to those who perhaps didn't know Jesus in a personal way. My mind wondered and maybe even worried, "What will they think? Will they see me as a 'Jesus Freak?"
Then thoughts went to those who are strong in their faith, the pastor who'd be presiding and my pastor who was now sitting in the pew while I stood behind the podium. Again the same thought, "What will they think? Would I say something wrong, omit an important Truth or misuse an opportunity?"
Then thoughts went to my mom and her siblings, "What would they think as I shared stories about their mom?" Thoughts went to my siblings and cousins as well, "Would I share memories they'd experienced too?"
My mind was racing with these thoughts until God reminded me who my audience is...it's true, all the people I mentioned above were in the congregation, but my audience, the only One I needed to please, was and is God my Father.
He even brought a few verses to mind and confirmed the message He'd impressed on my heart -
Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts. 1 Thessalonians 2:4
For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galations 1:10
We must obey God rather than men! Acts 5:29
I pray the words I shared that day pleased the only audience that really mattered. In my attempt to please God, He blessed me as others shared that my words had touched their hearts. When you and I strive to please God, He takes care of the details and is faithful to bless our obedience.
In the days that have followed, God has had more to say about my audience. In that time, I haven't stood in front of a crowd, but my audience is still present. God has been reminding me that it doesn't matter what I'm doing, who I am speaking to or how I feel, He is watching. He is El Roi, the God who sees. And He has created me with a purpose, to please and glorify Him.
It's important to think about this when delivering a message many will hear, but it's just as important, if not more, when speaking to my husband, disciplining my children or joking with a friend. God is watching and as 2 Corinthians 5:9 says, "So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please Him." Lord, make that the desire of our hearts!
If that is our desire, our passion, we know Psalms 19:14 will be true in our lives! It says, “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”
Something to think about - Daily, do you live for an audience of One? If not, what would change if you did?