These are some amazing words from Jesus. “By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.” (John 5:30) I would never have thought of Jesus as helpless. Of course in his divinity he could have chosen to do whatever he wants. That is only really true of God. We may think we can do whatever we choose, but we are naturally limited by our own humanity. But Jesus freely chose to humble himself and completely rely on the power of the Spirit.
Relying on the Father for direction and discernment is the way of Jesus. He chose to listen rather than to act independently. He gave up his own desires and simply sought to please the Father with perfect obedience.
This should be our pattern. We should listen and watch for what God is saying and doing. Our motivation must be examined and pruned. Few of us can say “I seek not to please myself.” If we are honest we have to admit often we try to please others so they will like us. So even pleasing another has a self-centered drive. To follow Rabbi Jesus we, too, must switch our orientation. It is about His will and His pleasure. Will you make the switch?