This Sunday I am preaching on work that glorifies God (Eph. 6:5-8). As I made my way through that passage this afternoon, I was meditating on the phrase “not…as men-pleasers” (6:6) and the numerous other similar phrases in the NT and the example of Samuel who looked far too quickly at external qualities and ignored internal conditions of the heart, causing him to overlook David as the next king (1 Sam. 16:7).
Much more has been said on this topic, but here is one consideration I had today: There is a regular temptation to be more concerned about what men think of us, rather than what God thinks of us. This will lead us to be more active in ordering our external activities to conform to the expectations of men rather than conforming our hearts to the expectations of God. Tragically, because we get immediate feedback from men and delayed feedback from God about our activities and heart-condition, we will emphasize the temporal and minimize the eternal. It is easier to do this (if we only consider the immediate implications), but we always do this to our detriment.