My Grace-Full Life

12.13.17 Prayer Prompt: The Opinion That Matters

PRAYER PROMPT ••• At some point, your mom or dad probably asked you: “If all your friends jump off a cliff, would you do it too?” 
We are too worried about what others think of us. 
We worry about how we look to others. 
How we sound to others. 
What they think of us. 
Whether or not they like us. 
A little secret it’s taken me the better part of 43 years to learn: it doesn’t matter. 
What other people think of you is none of your business. 
But knowing that and living it are two different things. 
We crave the approval of the people around us – both friends and strangers. 
Think the latter isn’t true? 
Try tripping over thin air in the middle of a crowded Mexican restaurant while your purse goes flying, your shoes fall off, and you literally fall flat on your face… not that something like ever happened to me, eh-hem. 
Bottom line, when we get embarrassed in public, yes.
Strangers’ opinions matter to us too. 
But what about God’s opinion of us? 
We know He loves us, but what does He think of us? 
Of all the opinions in the whole universe, His is the only one that matters. 
Do we consciously look for ways to honor God? 
Look for opportunities to please Him or make Him proud of us? 
Lest I cause any confusion here, let me clarify: NOTHING we say or do can earn our place with God. 
NOTHING we say or do can cancel out His love for us. 
But as Christians, though we know we can’t earn our salvation, we should make every attempt to show our love and devotion to God by doing things that are honorable to Him. 
Things like being kind to a stranger. 
Or showing compassion to someone who is hurting. 
Jesus said in Matthew 25:40, “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’” 
William Gurnall was a 17th-century clergyman who said, “We fear man so much because we fear God so little.” 
And therein lies the whole point. 
We have to stop worrying about what others think and spend more time wondering what God thinks. 
Today, as you pray, ask God to help you focus on pleasing Him and doing things that will honor Him… 
Not for human approval, but for His Heavenly approval.

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