How often are we swayed in our views of the world because of what we hear from other people? Personally, I let myself be swayed more than I’d like. Just this week, I doubted my usefulness in God’s kingdom because of one lady’s words. Despite my knowledge that God says He created me uniquely and with a purpose, I began to doubt because I heard otherwise from elsewhere. This wasn’t the first time I let myself doubt my identity because of someone’s words.
One time, a friend told me I was going to hell because of one of our religious differences. Again, despite my knowledge of what the Bible says about who goes to heaven and who goes to hell, I let a few words from my friend rattle me.
There are plenty of examples of letting the world shape me like-
-I sometimes fail to let God decide whether I am beautiful. There are times when one segment of E! News will convince me that I am not good-looking in comparison to others.
-I know that reacting in love is right, beneficial, and glorifying to God, yet I am too easily convinced that to ‘survive’ in this world, I need to be tough and harsh.
-God tells me that His grace is enough to cover my sins, yet one conversation about deeds easily convinces me that I am not good enough and that I am too broken to be repaired.
There are so many other examples I could list, but I won’t because you probably get the point.
Why am I swayed so easily? Why is it so difficult to hold tightly to what God says about me?
When we look to our worldview (how we react to the world around us), we realize how fluidly it intersects with how we view God. Viewing God as loving helps us view the people of the world as lovable. Viewing God as forgiving helps us view people as redeemable. Viewing God as all-knowing helps us trust His laws as we interact with the world. Understanding God’s grace and truth changes the way we react to the world around us.
The portion of this equation that I often forget is that “how I react to the world around me” will include whether or not I accept the world’s opinion of ME as truth. How I view God should drastically influence how I view myself. When someone insists that I am not beautiful, worthy, purposeful, saved, or considered, I can look to God to find my answers. The way I react to the world in this way should be directly tied to God.
Just as we react to what happens in the world, we also react to what people tell us. For me, this has been the harder lie to combat. It is difficult to remember what God says about us when people tell us differently. It is even more difficult when the people that tell us differently are high in status or in the church community. No matter how wise a person may be, we know that God is wiser. Even while we ask people for advice (which is not a bad idea!), we should be checking the Bible to make sure it is what GOD says. One thing I know is that anyone can throw around a Bible verse out of context, even Satan did that in the desert with Jesus. In hearing advice, even if it is from another Christian, we can make sure their advice goes along with who we know God to be- a God of grace who loves us unconditionally, and a God of truth who knows and wants what is best for us. If advice, even if labeled ‘Biblical’, does not coincide with the facts that God loves you unconditionally, you do not need to earn His love, and His laws are good for Him and the world, then the advice is not God’s advice. (But hey, make sure to check up on what I write as well).
So, in the spirit of changing my worldview to reflect God’s worldview, I will also apply His truths to myself. I will not let myself dabble in the idea that “maybe I’m not saved,” or “maybe I’m not worth something” because some person tells me so. Instead, I will go to the Bible and seek His wisdom. I will ask for discernment in interpreting His word and ask for help when the Word seems to contradict who I know God is. I will try my best to remember what HE says above what the world says, because I want my worldview (in all ways) to reflect the heart of Jesus.