What Can I Do to Impress Jesus?

Have you ever tried to impress Jesus? Maybe you’ve thought…He will really be pleased if I do this…He will really love me if I stop doing that.

I’ve fallen into that trap—seeking approval based on my performance. That’s been a tendency in human relationships as well.

If we want to impress people, we need to know what they expect and appreciate.

Two things amazed Jesus—faith and lack of faith.

Two things amazed Jesus—faith and lack of faith. Click To Tweet

A centurion heard about Jesus and sent a delegation asking him to come and heal his servant, who lingered near death.

“He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: ‘Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed….”

“When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, ‘I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.’ Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well” (see Luke 7:1-10 NIV).

Jesus had a different response when he went to his hometown and began teaching in the synagogue. People began asking questions. “‘Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?’ And they took offense at him.

“Jesus said to them, ‘Only in his hometown is a prophet without honor.’ He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he was amazed at their lack of faith” (see Mark 6:1-6 NIV).

The Israelites struggled to trust the Lord during their long journey to the land of promise. Giving instruction through Moses and Joshua, the Lord often said, “When you come into the land….” He never said “if.” He had made a covenant, and it was a done deal.

The Lord still speaks. When he gives a promise, it’s a done deal. Doubt says “if.” Faith says “when.”

The Lord still speaks. When he gives a promise, it’s a done deal. Doubt says “if.” Faith says “when. Click To Tweet

That’s amazing faith!

If you want to impress Jesus, start there.

(Adapted from Cabbages and Kings—Reflections on Living Abundantly in Christ)

© Dianne Barker 2020

2 responses to “What Can I Do to Impress Jesus?”

  1. This one hit me hard, Dianne. I don’t do twitter, but I wrote down your quote about if and when in my quote journal. It’s a keeper.

  2. Thanks, Cindy! Many of us have an on-going struggle with doubt (if) and faith (when). And the gap between promise and fulfillment leaves plenty of room for the “ifs” to nudge their way in. Choosing to believe God will do what He has promised–no matter how long the wait–quiets the questioning voice and allows me to rest in confidence.

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