On Sucking Up

We have all seen them and we all really dislike them.  I’m talking about the student who continually sucks up to the teacher.  As a teacher I have to confess that it takes me a bit to realize what is going on and then I really dislike the student doing so.   It takes me a while because I love all the nice things they say.  But really after a while it goes over the top and then the light bulb goes on.

How many times in church listening to the morning prayers do we hear people sucking up to God.  It usually goes something like this.  “Oh mighty Father, King of Kings, Ruler of the vast universe, patient one, loving one, and on and on.”    You get the idea.  Now don’t get me wrong; I think praise is fine.  The Psalms are full of praise.  It’s just that I get the idea that in the back of our minds we are thinking we want to make Him feel good before we ask for something.  I even sat through a prayer seminar once where I was taught we must always begin our prayers with a praise section. Really?  Let’s remember we are talking to the one who can read our minds.  He knows what we really think.  He knows the truth.

The best possible praise we can render to God is not a lot of trite, flowery phrases but a life of service.  What we do is so much more important than what we say.

Just as I am insulted when I catch on that a student is sucking up to me so we insult God when we suck up to Him.   Don’t do it.  Only say nice things to Him when you mean it.

Written by Roger Bothwell on February 6, 2015

Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 93574