“For the kingdom of God is not food and drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit;” (Romans 14:17).
It’s all part of the pyramid of life. At the very bottom, our needs are the basics; food, water and shelter will nourish a person’s body and give him/her life. At the very top of the pyramid is the achievement of inner peace, one-ness, where it is the mind and spirit that will be nourished, and the physical elements of the world is no longer as important. Reality, however, usually puts most of us somewhere in between the two extremes trying to reach the pinnacle while being careful to not slip back towards the basic foundation of life. Here is where a person usually seeks for acceptance; to have a sense of belonging to a family or a people and to achieve acknowledgement for one’s being and/or action.
At this level, the young and the old can be found for no human is too divine that they never seek the acceptance from another person. For example it might be important for you to have the approval of your spouse, or children, or boss, or neighbors and maybe even political party to name just a few. Without these people’s acceptance, your being or actions somehow seem meaningless and without purpose, kind of like your missing that pat on the back or the ‘that a girl/boy’ words of encouragement. Unfortunately, for this prize you and I are sometimes willing to go extended lengths to get it. For instance, some people deny their relationship with a family member, deny their faith, believes, and religion, or kept silent when a positive voice needed to be heard for the weaker side just so it could seem like they are in agreement with the rest of the crowd. This need for human acceptance has brought us from small, unimportant, materialistic issues such as wardrobe to more important issues such as faith. Remember Jesus’ rock, disciple Peter; he wanted acceptance from the crowd that was persecuting his Lord so that his life may be spared so when asked he denied knowledge and relations with Jesus on three different occasions. Many Jewish authorities at that time also believed in Jesus, but they too feared man and wanted man’s acceptance. “They loved human approval rather than the approval of God” (John 12:42-43). Does that statement ring true to your ears? Have you often sought for human acceptance rather than God’s? If so, let us do a little reality check and ask ourselves, why we love human approval…
1)when it is God that will pass judgment on us on the last day?
2)when God has already accepted us as his children regardless of how we look, feel, say, think etc. and through Jesus a room has been prepared for us in God’s home?
3)and want to belong to this world which will one day come to an end, when the Kingdom of God promises us life ever lasting? And finally,
4)when their love for us depends on if we deliver and is taken away when we make mistakes, when God’s love for us is that of a Father and hence is unconditional?
Next time you consider bending over backwards to achieve human acceptance, try asking yourselves those questions, and if it is still not clear we can generate more because the list of reasons in favor of God are endless. And that’s a true check of reality.