• Chris Steele

Looking for Recognition?

Be Strong, Be Well — Wednesday, January 6, 2021


In Luke 17:7-10, Jesus spoke of the life of a servant and their duties for their masters. He said being a servant is often a thankless job, without any recognition for the work done. The Lord’s conclusion was, “So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.’ ”

We are prone to look for those pats on the back, words of encouragement, “attaboy or attagirl,” just any kind of approval for a job well done. The Bible tells us, if we are expecting praise and honor from other people, we may get it, but that’s all we’ll have (Matthew 6:2-16). There won’t be any from God.

If recognition from men is what we want, what happens when we don’t receive it? If we’re looking for honor and praise for all of our hard work, and it goes unnoticed, we may decide to call it quits. Why would we work so hard and go the extra mile if no one notices or appreciates it?

The question is, are we doing what we do just so others will see and give us some kind of praise? Although tempting, Jesus said, “Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise, you have no reward from your Father in heaven” (Matthew 6:1).

Paul said, “For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ” (Galatians 1:10).

Our motivation for living in righteous service before God, is because God has asked this of us. Our whole duty in life is to serve Him (Ecclesiastes 12:13). And we’ll do it because we love Him (John 14:15).

Although God doesn’t need our feeble efforts, nor does He owe us anything for our service or our love (Romans 11:33-36), our deeds will not be ignored (Hebrews 6:9-12). The things we do quietly, behind the scenes, and unknown by others, God will reward openly (Matthew 6:18). —Chris

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