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FOR THY SAKE

By K.P. Yohannan


      "My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work" (John 4:34)

      The most unhappy people in the world are the ones who live only for themselves. All that they do, they do only for their own sake. For these self- centered individuals, the most precious things in the world is their "self." Like a cancer that eats and destroys its own cells, the self-centered individual is slowly dying inwardly.

      Sometimes these self-centered individuals mask their concern for their own physical and mental welfare by insisting that it is for "their family." They are blinded by the pleasures and comforts of this world, and seek only to gratify themselves as they hoard luxuries within their households. Blinded to the truth of eternity, they cannot see either their own true needs or the needs of the multitudes around them.

      Sometimes, out of guilt, they will "do something good." But when they do, it is with one eye toward the glory that will come to their name, and the praise, influence and power that will hopefully follow. And if these glories do not follow, the self-centered "do-gooder" then becomes insolent, upset and unhappy. Bitterness replaces joy, because while the deeds were good, the inner motive was corrupt.

      But what a change when we come to the place in our life when we put Jesus in the center--when we can honestly say, "Lord, for thy sake I am glad to do all that pleases you." Our priority must not be our own joy and happiness, but God's will, His name, His cause. Doing anything we do for His sake makes all the difference in the world. Then, without seeking it, the joy and happiness follow.

      It is well to ask ourselves, "Why am I doing what I do. And why am I not doing some things I know need to be done? Why is there no joy in my heart and I feel empty, even doing good?" The answer could very well be this: our good works are no longer being done for His sake, but for our own pleasure. It is possible, as Watchman Nee once suggested, to be serving the house of God and to have forgotten the Lord who is Master of the house. "For me to live is Christ," wrote the Apostle Paul. He said he did all things; "For Thy Sake." May we this day--and always--live to do all things for His

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