Why do I care so much what others think of me? Why do I react when our pastor has reminded us to act, not to react. Sigh. Why am I still making the same mistakes over and over again? Why am I using why to start each sentence?
First question: why do I care so much what others think of me? Maybe because I never measured up for my mom, ever. But that is the past, and Satan now distracts me with this worry when I should be focused on how God sees me instead. I need to remember what God’s word says about me:
“For Thou didst form my inward parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from Thee, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Thy book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them.” ~ Psalm 139:13-16
He knew me, cared about me, planned for me, before I was even conceived! I am important to God!
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” ~ Romans 5:8
Even though I am a sinner, God loves me and sent His Son to die for me. I am a sinner, yes, but saved by grace and cleansed and clothed in the righteousness of Jesus! I am valuable to Him!
On to the second question: why do I react instead of act? That is easy, I am a sinner and still allow my sin nature to control my emotions and actions at times, doggone it. I take comfort in the fact that Paul struggled with this as well:
“For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the wishing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I wish, I do not do; but I practice the very evil that I do not wish. But if I am doing the very thing I do not wish, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wishes to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind, and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.” ~ Romans 7:18-25
Only with God’s help through the power of the Holy Spirit can I ever hope to do the good which I desire to do!
As for the third question: why am I still making the same mistakes over and over? I think the above passage in Romans covers that as well.
Whenever Satan distracts me with his lies about my worthlessness, he gets my focus off of my purpose in life: to love God and to be loved by Him.
A final note, a confession in fact… Whenever I try to “stand up for myself”, I make things worse. Again, it is reacting, sometimes overreacting, instead of acting. Sigh. I can’t figure out the difference between being a doormat and simply allowing God to take care of my “reputation”.
I think I shall err on the side of doormat, because I end up regretting what I’ve said and beating myself up for hours, ugh! Forgiven, saved by grace, forgiven, saved by grace, forgiven, saved by grace, forgiven, saved by grace…
“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” ~ Micah 6:8