There are many lessons we can learn as Christians, but there is one that is the most important and probably says just about everything about how we should live our lives out.
The first article of faith for Christians is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever.
St Mark’s gospel says,
One of the scribes came near and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, he asked him, ‘Which commandment is the first of all?’ Jesus answered, ‘The first is, “Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” The second is this, “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’ Mark 12:30-31 NRSV
Of course, this is taken directly from the Ten Commandments God gave Moses in the desert. The first of these commandments recorded in the Old Testament is, ‘you shall have no other gods before Me‘ and the law that the Israelites obeyed. Jesus added to love your neighbour too.
And when you think of it, Jesus was streets ahead of modern-day counsellors, therapists and psychologists.
Because many of us, from the beginning of time until modern days, have searched for peace and fulfilment in all the wrong places. From other people’s approval and validation, compulsive behaviour such as excessive shopping, gambling or addiction to no end of substances to fulfil unmet needs.
But, when we rely on someone, or something, else to fulfil our wants and needs, we allow that person or thing to control us.
However, when we have God as our central reference point, we do not need anything from anyone, or anything, else.
When we go about life, not thinking of what we need or want but how we can glorify God today, we free ourselves from looking for others to satisfy our needs, or compulsive habits, to be our authentic selves as God created us to be.
When we let go of trying to control others, we set them free to be themselves and ourselves free to be ourselves.
Because we can never control anyone else, and we should not seek validation from anyone else either, because it only builds resentment when others do things their way, not ours. This is not what God wanted for us.
So relax in the power of the Holy Spirit and glorify God today; just give all praises to God as we experience him in the everyday moments of life, and allow others the freedom to do the same in their own ways, then enjoy the peace that develops.,