WHAT MAKES GOD SMILE?
from Reconnecting With God Part 2 of 4
18 March 2007
“You (God) created everything, and it is for your pleasure that they exist and were created!" Rev. 4:11b (NLT)
WORSHIP: Living a life ________________________
“Because of God's great mercy... Offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him. This is the true worship that you should offer.”
Rom. 12:1 (GN)
WE GIVE GOD PLEASURE...
1. WHEN WE _____________________________________
"I don't want your sacrifices-- I want your love! I don't want your offerings--I want you to know me!” Hosea 6:6 (LB)
2. WHEN WE _____________________________________
“The Lord takes pleasure in those who honor him and trust in his constant love.”
Ps. 147:11 (GN)
3. WHEN WE _____________________________________
“We please God by what we do and not only by what we believe.” James 2:24 (CEV)
4. WHEN WE _____________________________________
“The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who are wise,
who want to please God.” Ps. 14:2 (LB)
!! WHAT MAKES GOD SMILE?
Based on ‘Reconnecting With God’ Part 2 of 4
The most fundamental question you can ask in life is, Why am I here? What is my purpose in life? The Bible is very, very clear about this. It tells us in Revelation 4:11 why God made us. “God created everything, and it is for God’s pleasure that they exist and were created!" You were made God’s pleasure. You were created to bring God pleasure. If you want to know why you’re here on this earth, if you want to know why you’re alive, if you want to know why you take the next breath that you take it’s because God made you to enjoy you. Not for your benefit – for His benefit. You were made to bring pleasure to God. That’s why you’re here. Until you understand that, you don’t understand life.
Those of you who are parents, when you watch your children do you ever get pleasure by watching them. And the same is true of your heavenly Father. When you’re doing the right things He takes pleasure in watching you. God says, I made them and I enjoy them. You were made to bring pleasure to God. That is your number one purpose in life – to get God's smile. He created you for His own benefit.
There’s a word that God uses that describes when we bring pleasure to God. That word is one of the most misunderstood and misused words in the human vocabulary. In fact, I guarantee you, everyone including me, has misused this word. It is the word “worship”. When we bring pleasure to God, we worship God.
Again, people don’t understand this word. If I were to go out on the street what do you think most people would say worship is? If I were to take an opinion poll and said, Tell me what is your definition of “worship”? What do you think of when I say “worship”?” What do you think most people would say? Maybe some words like church, choir, music, mass, ritual, ceremony, prayer, maybe communion.
Let me give you a definition of worship. Worship is living a life pleasing to God.
I’ve often heard people say, “I loved the worship today. I got a lot out of it.” I hate to tell you this but worship isn’t for your benefit. It’s not for you anyway. It’s for God. When we worship we’re bringing pleasure to God not bringing pleasure to ourselves. So if you came this morning and you leave saying, “I didn’t get anything out of worship today,” you came for the wrong reason in the first place. Worship isn’t for you. We do it for God to bring Him pleasure. Everything that is done in this service is designed to bring God pleasure.
What brings pleasure to God? What makes God smile? If my purpose is to bring pleasure to God, how do I do that? How do I make God smile on my life?
Can I suggest that there are four ways you can make God smile:
1. We bring pleasure to God when we love Him above everything else.
When we love Him above everything else, when we love Him supremely, that brings God pleasure. This is very clear in the Bible. Hosea 6:6 says this: “I don’t want your sacrifice. I want your love. I don’t want your offerings. I want you to know Me.” He wants you to know Him and He wants you to love Him. If you miss that you miss the point of life. God wants a relationship with you. I know that’s amazing but it is true. That out of all the universe and all the people God could have made He made you and He made you to be loved by Him and to love Him back.
The Bible says that you were made in God's image. That makes you different from animals. The animals are not made in God's image but human beings are. That means God has given you a capacity He has not given animals. That is the capacity to know God and to love Him. Animals can’t do that. You’ll never see a dog or cat or a cow or a horse praying. They were not given that capacity. You, though, were made in God's image so you could commune, communicate, have a relationship with God. If you don’t ever develop that in your life you have missed the purpose of being a human. You have wasted your life. Because to be a human means to be made in God's image which means I have the ability and capacity to get to know God on personal basis.
When you come to God and say, “God, I’m not coming to You because I’m in a crisis and I need You to bail me out. I’m not coming to You because I’ve got this big request or I want You to make me a millionaire or super successful. I’m just coming to You because You made me. And I want to get to know You and I want to love You.” That thrills the heart of God. When you come running into His arms and you delight in the fact that God made you and loves you, that brings God great pleasure. That makes God smile. When was the last time you did that?
2. We bring pleasure to God when we trust Him completely.
When your kids trust you, that brings you pleasure. When you trust your heavenly Father, that brings God pleasure. That’s called faith. And the Bible says, ”Without faith it is impossible to please God.” It’s the way you please God – by trusting Him.
What does it mean to trust God completely? It means you trust God to know what’s best. You trust God to keep His promises. You trust God to figure out how to handle the impossible things in your life. And you trust God to do the impossible when things look overwhelming to you. You trust Him completely.
You know why you don’t trust God? Because you don’t realize how big He is. It’s so easy to forget how great, how powerful, how huge God is. What we tend to do is we tend to shrink God down to our size. We whittle Him down. There should be a movie: “ Honey, I shrunk the God!” J. B. Phillips wrote a book called Your God is Too Small. How do I know your God is too small? Because when you have problems, you don’t go to Him. You say, “I'll handle this, God. I can take care of this. Let me do it.” As if you’ve got more energy, more strength, more brains, more wisdom, more power than God does. If you want to really please God, if you want tog to smile on your life, you’ve got to let God be as great as He is. You’ve got to let God be God. You’ve got to say, “God I want You to be magnified in my eyes because I’ve made You too small and I’m sorry for it. I’ve limited You by my lack of faith.” We please God by trusting Him completely.
That brings the smile of God. When we love Him supremely and we trust Him completely.
3. We bring pleasure to God when we obey Him wholeheartedly.
Obedience brings pleasure to God, to our heavenly Father. Jesus says, “If you love Me do what I say.” Don’t just give me lip service Give me your life. If you love Me keep My commandments. That’s the proof of your love. And that brings God pleasure.
What does it mean to obey God wholeheartedly?
It means without reservations. Holding nothing back. No questions. No, But God...! No, he just said, You said to do it. I’ll do it. No reservations. No hesitation.
I must obey Him completely. That brings the smile of God.
4. We bring pleasure to God when we fulfil His purposes.
God smiles on our lives when we fulfil the purposes that He put us on earth to fulfil.
What I’m saying is everything in life can be done as an act of worship, everything in life can be done to bring glory to God, and everything in life can be done for God's pleasure if you do it with the right attitude. If you say, God, today I want to live for Your pleasure. You can wash dishes for the glory of God. You can mow the lawn for the glory of God. Everything you do in life can be done to bring God pleasure if you’ve got the right attitude saying God, You gave me this ability and I want to please You with it.
Whenever you use any talent or any ability that God gave you and you do it for God's glory that’s an act of worship.
If you want to summarize why there are so many problems in this world you can boil it all down to one factor: people are more interested in pleasing themselves than the Creator who made them. They’re not at all interested in pleasing God. They’re interested in doing what they want to do. Sadly, I’m sure there may be some here today who haven’t the slightest interest in doing what God wants you to do. You’re not interested in pleasing God. You’re interested in living for yourself. God would say to you that is a fatal mistake. What are you thinking? The arrogance of thinking that God would create me for His purpose and then I would live my life for my own is so audacious it’s almost inconceivable. It is the reason why we have all the problems in the world today. People are living for their own pleasure.
I invite you to be a 21st century Christian. I invite you to live your life for the pleasure of God.
Dear God, we realise we owe everything to You. We would not even be born if it weren’t for You. You made us to love us. You deserve our love and worship. We want to live for Your smile, not the opinions of other people. We want to live a lifestyle of worship that is pleasing to You and so we pray that you would give us the power to love You above everything else. To trust You completely and step out in faith when You ask us to do that. To obey You wholeheartedly even when we don’t understand it and it seems hard. And to fulfil Your purposes. Father, help us to live a heart of worship. In Your name. Amen.