{ More Jesus } What do others think of me? / Day 11

READ: Colossians 4:2-6

 

“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” (ESV)

I was riding in the car the other day with my three small children enjoying the beautiful spring weather and soaking in a peaceful ride in the car. My daughter was given the Disney Princess WOW CD as a gift earlier this year and it’s on constant loop when we are driving around town. All three of my kids, along with my husband and I sing the songs on autopilot now. I am pretty sure none of us even know what we are singing anymore.

As we were listening to the familiar songs, we bumped to the next track which happened to be a song from Sleeping Beauty. I have heard this song a thousand times but I have never fully paid attention to the lyrics. That day in the car, those lyrics became a repeated mantra that I could not stop thinking about.

“…and I know it’s true that visions are seldom all they seem but if I know you I know what you do…”

I just love how those lyrics spell it out. Our visions and our perceptions are often greater than fact. It’s how we personally SEE the truth of the matter. If we know people and truly know them well, then we have a greater understanding of their heart and motivations and ultimately what they are all about.

In a world that tells us ‘to each his own’ and ‘do what you will at your own accord’, does it matter what people think? Well, the Bible gives us some pretty clear examples that it actually does.

If we look at Paul’s words we get both sides of this important coin. He tells us in Galatians 1:10, “Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant” (NLV). Conversely, he also instructs us “Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil” (1 Timothy 3:7 ESV).

These verses can seem to contradict each other completely but ultimately point us to the root of the important matter. We are Christ’s representatives both to those who follow Him and those who do not. It matters what people think of us because ultimately our way of living reflects the Savior and His work in our lives. We want others to see His power, beauty, grace and faith. It matters, like a lot!

At the same time, we live in a fallen world with people who will be resistant to seeing the work of God in our lives. Our day to day living cannot be hung in a balance of whether people approve and like how we are doing everything. Of course, everyone wants to be liked and admired but my allegiance is to the One not everyone.

I love how Paul so tenderly shares the prayer of his heart in Colossians 4:3, “that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ.” Every single day, God allows us to walk through the doors He opens wide to be His agents on the ground. We don’t have to tether the rope of legality but cling to the cross that already did it all for us.

We don’t have to tether the rope of legality but cling to the cross that already did it all for us. Click To Tweet

Be encouraged that you can rest in His masterful way of using you this very day. Everything pure and everything ridged. The honest reality and the twisted perception. He smooths us like the river reshapes the rocks that sit below the surface. As we allow His waters to wash over us, we become that living proof.

In the words of Sleeping Beauty, “if I know you, I know what you do!” I want people to know who and what I am all about. I do not live to win their approval but to reflect the God I feebly represent.

Reflect:

  • How have the perceptions of others either set you free or held you captive to live out boldly for Christ?
  • Reflect on a time when God spoke to you personally about your restored identity in Him.
  • God amazingly allows us to co-labor with Him in ministry. How is God speaking to you now about stepping out in faith to be His agent on the ground in your current situation?

Prayer:

Father God, thank you that our identity is perfectly set in you. Father, remove the fear of the perceptions of others so that we can freely move as you ask us to. God, also give us wisdom and discernment as we are ever mindful of what other people do think of us. We want to steward any and all influence well and simply love others as you did. Father, thank you that you have already done it ALL for us. That we can rest in the freedom of the cross that covered it all. In your name, Amen.

Lindsay Alexander
Lindsay Alexander
Lindsay is wife to her husband Monty and mom of three blonde-haired and blue-eyed, wide-open and spirited children. Life has been crazy in the Alexander household with two moves to two states in the past two years. Now, she lives in a real life fixer upper house and enjoys the comforts of fried chicken and sweet tea living back in South Carolina. A personal journey of transformation, Lindsay feels called to encourage women to step off the bench and take great risks in the name of Jesus.

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