“One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it. He who eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks; and he who does not eat, to the Lord he does not eat, and gives God thanks.” Romans 14:5-6
“For I know nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord.”1 Corinthians 4:4
“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,” Colossians 3:23
Recently many of us have all attended performances of our children and grandchildren. Whether they were singing, dancing, reading, or acting they were likely smiling and doing their best. During one such performance at school, I reflected on these little performers. Many of them stood still while waiting, and did everything they were directed on cue. While other performers were very rambunctious, and did not follow the group as well. Yet each time the song would end, each would look up in the crowd, searching for their relatives and their approval. Once they saw a smile, clap, or sign of approval, the performers themselves would beam with delight. It didn’t matter if little “Johnny” bothered me with his jolly antics, he was performing for an audience of one (family.)
An audience of one, Jesus our Lord, is what we should live for each day. As Paul instructs us in the verses above, we should live for the Lord each day, and no one else. If we seek His approval, according to our understanding of the scriptures, then we do well.
As a church there are still times when we must step in and adjust someone’s understanding of the scriptures, by rightly dividing the scriptures, or enlightening them to unfamiliar scriptures. This scripture is not a license to act as one chooses, and then call it “living for the Lord.” This judgment by the church (yes, judgment) is a careful, and prayerful act.
Once the scriptures are laid out and understood by the believer, it is their responsibility to give their service/work/life to the Lord daily. There will be differences in interpretations, as the issues of food and holy days were for Paul in Romans; however each can be done in service to the Lord. God knows our true motives, and will judge them in the times to come. (2 Cor 5:10)
On this day of celebrating the Gift of Jesus to the world, how have you acted? Are you giving a gift of service to the Lord?