He Is Already Pleased
We spend a lot of time trying to impress people. We use our intelligence, our influence, our possessions and even our looks. But what happens when we find ourselves trying to impress God?
I remember playing sports growing up. I always wanted to impress my dad on the basketball court or baseball field. I would constantly look into the stands to see if he was watching me. After a fantastic game, I was anxious to hear his approval. After a terrible game, I was ashamed and expected to see a shaking head of disappointment. In my mind, I felt that his acceptance was based on my performance.
But God shows us what kind of father he is in Mark 1:9-11:
“In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.’”
The passage comes 30 years into Jesus’ life. He hadn’t done very much up to this point. His ministry hadn’t begun. He was merely a carpenter and a son of Joseph and Mary.
As He is baptized in the Jordan River, the voice of God and the Spirit come down and tell him two things:
- You are my beloved Son: This is important. God is speaking Jesus’ identity over Him. He is telling Him who He is. Before Jesus is commissioned to ministry, His Father affirms His identity as a son.
- With you I am well pleased: Jesus hadn’t done anything yet and here His Father is telling Him that He is well pleased. Before Jesus goes out, He knows He has pleased His father. He knows that He will not need to work for approval or have to worry about losing the approval of His father.
Before we try to do a single thing for God, we have to know that we are His sons and daughters and that He is well pleased with us.
Understanding these two truths will give us the ability to serve God in love. We will never feel the need to impress God. Because we already have His approval, rather than go out and do something for Him, we can live our lives with Him.
Originally posted on September 9, 2011