I was reading here today, and it reminded me of a sermon I heard once in which the phrase “free from public opinion” was mentioned. The phrase stuck with me because it’s always been my struggle to put the things of God before my need for the approval of those around me.

More recently the reminder has been from Galatians 1:10, Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Ouch.

Bob blog suggests to “care what people think, but not be consumed by it.” But I wonder … I’ve seen the narcissist that he describes, who cares nothing for what anyone else thinks of him or his actions and ideas. But I think that maybe the narcissist’s problem is not so much that he doesn’t care what they think … but that he doesn’t care who they are. He may be so busy trying to fit their square peggedness into his round holiness (pun intended), that he doesn’t see their needs, their passions, their gifts, or their talents. He’s the boss instead of the leader; the owner instead of the shepherd.

So, in our zeal to please God and follow his leading, let us not care too much what people think of us … but let us care deeply about who they are and how we can meet their needs, fuel their passions, and come alongside them in partnership to glorify God.

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