Thursday, October 13, 2016

What Other People Think

One of my favorite books is Something to Sing About.  In this book, the son has a history of struggles, struggles with jobs and struggles with marriages.  At one point, the parents were talking about Pate's failed marriages, and Pate's father asked his mother, "What would other people think?"

At this, she replied, "Since when do we live our lives based on what other people think?"

Isn't that an excellent question for all of us?

Even me.  Take yesterday for instance.

Yesterday, my husband had to be in Nashville to sit with a family of a church member who was having a heart procedure done. This meant that I would be taking all the children to school.  My regular morning routine was cut short because I would have to leave the house earlier than normal.  I did my morning Bible study and then began the work of getting little boys ready for school.  After working all day, I had an extra hour and a half after school with my robotics team.  I had enough time to run home and clean up a mess my youngest son had made and then head to church.  After church, we had our usual dinner at Dairy Queen with some of our church family. We came home spent some time together as a family, and then it was off to bed.

My #write31days was put on hold yesterday, and at one point, I worried what you might think of that.  I'll admit that I felt a little bit guilty about that. I didn't want you to be disappointed in me or think of me as a slacker.

But then this......

I realized that it didn't really matter what you thought about my absence from here yesterday, that God knew where my heart was.  He knew that I was being the wife, mother, teacher, coach, and friend that He needed me to be yesterday.  And that meant not sharing words with you.

As much as I love this space, this space to share words, connect, and encourage, I absolutely refuse to neglect the other things that I love to be here.

And I think that is part of our identity in Christ: we recognize our priorities and don't make idols for ourselves.

My love for my family should not be placed above my love for Christ.

My love for writing should not be placed above my love for my family.

Books, social media, friends, laundry, food, exercise.....nothing should be more important that being the woman that God has called me to be.

What you think of me should not be more important that what God thinks of me.

I know you are probably laughing and thinking, "Goodness, Girl! You're talking about writing a blog.  That's not that big of a deal."

But it is.  Because my desire to come here and share words can turn into the desire to get more likes and shares.  When it becomes a popularity contest, I could risk ruining my witness or making an idol out of blogging.

It's just like with anything else.....we care what our coworkers say so we engage in gossip.  We care what our friends think, so we sit around and drink wine with them.  We care what our kids' friends' parents think so we try to live a lifestyle that's just not right for our family.

Caring too much about what other people think can't have devastating effects.  People have been known to lose their marriages, friendships, homes, jobs, and lives.....all for caring what other people think.

Mark 8:36 says, "For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul?"

Our souls are precious. More precious than what car we drive, what clothes we wear, what ball team we are on.  Our souls are expensive.  They were bought with the price of the blood of Jesus.  Our souls were created for an eternal life in heaven.  Do we really want to spend a life in Hell because we care what other people think? Do we want to risk losing what we love because of what other people think?

Today, let's live caring only what God thinks, only what He knows about our hearts.  Ask Him to reveal to us things that are not pleasing to Him, things that are holding us back from being all He has created  us to be.  And then, let's live! Let's live with the peace and love and hope and assurance only possible by living for Christ!

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