Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. Romans 15:2 (NIV)
This verse doesn’t say to please people so they will like you. Some people will like you and some won’t. Some won’t like you simply because you are a Christian. Walk in peace with them as much as you can, but don’t compromise the truth of God’s Word. Jesus said that He didn’t come to bring peace, but a sword. What He means is that there is a separation; we’re either for the Lord or not. So, when we stand for Christ, some will not be for you- but God is! Sometimes we must displease people in order to please the Lord.
In Acts 4, Peter and John were brought before the religious leaders.
Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:18-20 (NIV)
They chose to obey God rather than men. Anytime man’s laws violate God’s laws, we obey God and trust Him for a good outcome. Peter and John were released, and they glorified God.
Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10 (NIV)
To fulfill our God-givn assignments, we must please God and not man. We cannot allow people to control and manipulate us. We should not be afraid to say “No” at the appropriate times. We need to stand our ground. Those who love us will understand. And the ones who do not understand are not needed in our lives.
The balance is this: we are to please God while loving people. We are to seek the praises of God, not men. Ephesians 1:6 says that God accepts us in Christ, so we do not need to look for acceptance from people. So, please the Lord, show love to people, accept yourself, and you will become the person God is making you to be.