I’m not sure when it is exactly, that we begin to worry about what everyone else thinks. I am trying to think back in my own life and remember when my first experience or awareness of what other people thought was. Not just thoughts about things… but about Me!
Everyone has opinions about things and for some reason we have accepted those as just that… an opinion. Some People are very vocal with their thoughts… opinions… while others will keep it to themselves… and of course there are those that although they say…. nary a word…. you know exactly what they are thinking!
I seem to always have an opinion about something. It makes life … interesting ! I “think” it is a good thing to have different views of things, and for the most part it doesn’t really add up to much in the long run what you think about a matter or not. It is simply…. your personal thoughts…. your opinion.
But when it comes to what you think of ME…. for some reason that seems to bother us a little more and we take it to heart!
When we were growing up, we were pretty much around family only, and typically what we heard from those around us….. was they thought we were pretty dog gone awesome! We were the prettiest or handsomest little 2 year old there ever was…. and smart… Oh My Goodness…. they thought we were the smartest little thing… I mean how many other 2 year olds knew all of their colors. We were the best at singing…. at dancing… and there was absolutely no one else that was loved like we were! Our Parents and Grandparents thought we were A Number 1!
Kindergarten comes around and now we head off to school feeling on top of the world! We march our little 5 year old bodies up those 3 huge steps on the school bus and look around to find a place to sit. We just know there is someone there on that bus full of seats that would love for us to sit down beside them. But now… we begin to see that not everyone has the same thoughts about us as our family at home does. Like a scene out of Forrest Gump, we hear and see what other people think of us. Some are verbal in their thoughts by declaring…. “this seats taken” (you said that with a southern accent when you read that I am sure) …others… with just “the look”…. and others just turned to pretend they didn’t see your need of a place to sit. Your perfect little world as you once knew it has now been shaken simply by what others were thinking about you.
From that moment on, a battle begins to rage in our minds… in our hearts. We begin to ask ourselves….” Is there something wrong with me”…. “do I look funny”… “smell funny” …. “talk funny”. “What makes me different”? “There really must be something wrong with me because EVERYONE thinks so!” Isn’t it funny how our little minds… and well… even our now, big grown up minds can and will take a handful of people who “think” we are unworthy of love or attention or what ever their opinion is of us… and believe it is EVERYONE!
Some of us now begin to try to please those people by trying to figure out how and what we can change about ourselves so that EVERYONE will “think” they are a great person. This can become a next to impossible task that can last for years upon years. We forget who we really are because of the many different people we have to become, just to make sure we fit in to the role of what certain people think we should be.
Some of us will believe that what some people think of us is who we really are and become a loner… depressed… and shy away from everything and everyone.
Some of us, however, will catch the …” I don’t give a flip about what you think about me” attitude and do and say and become who ever they want. Sometimes for the good…. and sometimes…. not in such a good way!
I am now 50 years old. It has taken me a long time, it seems to get to the point that it doesn’t really matter what others think about me. I know that life has thrown me into many situations that has given me the opportunity to grow and become stronger. I tried to change so many times to accommodate the thinking of others about who I should or shouldn’t be. Some of the changes I made were actually good. Some however… not so good. When trying to change to be who I thought my now ex-husband wanted me to be, I found that once I became one person… he now wanted something else.
I finally learned, after I became a Christian, that you can never be someone you are not! The only person you need to please or to care what they thought of you, was God! Oh… it still took many years to get there… and on some points I am still trying to work through those old ways of thinking. But… it is coming along, little by little… day by day.
So Today, I was thinking about how good it is to finally get to the point in my life that I just don’t really care about what people think of me…. knowing that I am exactly who God made me to be… and what people think of me is simply nothing more than their opinion, ….when… out of no where…. I believe I heard God say… “you know…. it does matter what people think of you”!
What? That can’t be God! I have spent my whole life trying not to let what other people think of me, and now…. it DOES matter what people think of me?????
My walk with God matters. What He thinks matters! What I do … and what I say… matters!
As a Christian…. people are watching me. Some, for no other reason but to watch me mess up!
Some ….are looking for someone who walks the walk as well as talks the talk.
I scroll through Facebook and I see so many “Christians” who are posting things on their wall that are so up lifting.. they have a beautiful scripture that has encouraged many as well as me, proof by the many comments below the post as well as 30-40 “likes” they have received. I scroll on down on their page and directly below it is a post that has the “f” word in it or one of the many other colorful words that we have the freedom to express via freedom of speech. Now… I have immediately began to “think” about the contradiction of principles their wall is screaming to me! Is that just my “opinion”? Should they care what “I think”? After all… we discussed that a few paragraphs up in that we shouldn’t care what people “think” about us. Right?
I have many Facebook friends… not all are Christians… and some are very vocal about their non-Christian status. Those people …. I have blocked from showing up on my news feed because of some of “those” kind of posts. Those things, although still not “right” in my opinion… are expected from those friends. They either don’t know any better or don’t care. I understand that. So I have chosen to delete some of them as friends or just block them from showing up every time I log in.
What people think of you… does matter… if… you are representing something or someone!
What you post… what you say…. what you do…. where you go… people WILL and ARE watching you…. and like it or not… they are forming an opinion of you!
If you are proclaiming yourself to be a Christian today… and tomorrow you are showing a different view of yourself….it will eventually catch up with you. I know that personally, I don’t want anyone that I love or have been praying for to think at any moment that my walk with God is a show. When the rubber hits the road and they need a Savior… will they know that I am someone they can trust… or will they just “think” that I am no different from all the other Christian actors, playing the part of who they want to be today.
Does it matter what everyone thinks of me? What do you think?
This is scary: You can tame a tiger, but you can’t tame a tongue—it’s never been done. The tongue runs wild, a wanton killer. With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth!