From an early age we work to get approval, whether it was proving to our parents that we could ride a bike without training wheels, or taking our first step—caring what other people think seems evitable.
Through the years it can become a problem for us as it can cripple us emotionally and spiritually. We need to get to the point where we don’t care what the media says, how colleagues feel about us, or live in state of constant fear or agony of what others think. The other person is not going to worry about it, or stay awake at night upset that you’re offended. You can’t be responsible for other people’s words, actions, or decisions as hurtful as they can be. We all want to be congratulated for a job well-done from even acquaintances, but what happens when they don’t, or you are not acknowledged in some way.
Yes, it’s painful, but now it’s time to regroup, refocus, and rise above petty people, things, sin, and caring what others think of you. They don’t know your back story, but Christ does. So, where do we begin and do we need to take ownership?
First let’s find a scripture we can study, pray on, and wield when there is an attack of injustice, or fear. Also enlisting a prayer warrior is a good idea so you know there is support. We need to also admit our sins, and moving on wrong motives, to strike back. This can be being passive agressive, snarky, giving people the silent treatment, or avoiding them all together.
And, why not? They hurt you, and they need to be paid back. Slow down there. Think back on all the times you regretted doing something out of emotion.
Not so good, huh? Let's take a step back and chill for a moment.
In Philippians 4:6-7, we are told to relax, and go to God for relief and strength. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Our minds can dictate our feelings and vice-versa, so every time we are worried about what others think switch to a scripture, prayer or praise. You can say “I trust the God of the Bible not my feelings.”
Add your name to a scripture. It can really personalize it and help you grow closer to the Lord.
1 Peter 5:7: “Cast all your [insert your name] anxieties on Him, because He cares for you [insert your name].”
Worrying about what others think is human, but when it’s to a point where our joy is being choked, then we need to become proactive, not reactive. Take people out of your courtroom of justice, and offer them to God, and also humble yourself. It's simply not worth it for your health, or hindering your walk--period.
Be patient, it’s a journey that will end in a victory. "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid, (John 14:27)."
Share your thoughts below on how you would deal with worry and caring about what others say or do. What advice would you offer others, is there something you would change?