We all care what others think. Nobody sets out to fail or even would pretend that failure is an option they are content with. Yet, it becomes a major problem when comparison or fear of failure begins to prevent us from doing what we are called to do or simply living fully with God and others.
Caring so much about what others think becomes crippling to the mind and it interferes in God's purposes for our lives. Furthermore, determining our success or failure based off of people's response will only slow us down and could eventually completely handicap us. It's important to note positive regard, but it must not become the complete barometer of God's blessing in our life.
What is our measure of success? Do we spend more time comparing ourselves rather trusting in what God has given us? What exactly is our heart set on as we follow Christ? Are we withholding because of some perceived lack or fear of possible failure?
Peter sank when he focused on the storm rather than Christ.
David would never have become King had they considered only his appearance and talent of caring for sheep.
Joseph would have given up had he not trusted God had a bigger plan than his imprisonment and the betrayal of his brothers.
God chooses the foolish things of this world to shame the wise.
"When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before him.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”” Samuel 16:6-7 ESV
What seems like failure may very well be part of God's plan of purpose and success. Take caution when you are tempted to define something a success or failure based on its outward appearance.
Although this isn't my first rodeo with this issue, I am realizing that once again the battle that needs to be fought and won in my heart regarding this topic.
I am living in a place of vulnerability like never before. I have willingly stepped into this season knowing this was where God was leading us. Yet, I still finding myself - at times - resisting embracing it fully. One main stumbling block is this battle of comparison or fear of failure. I will never allow myself to live fully wholeheartedly and vulnerably if it continues to wage war over my thoughts and feelings.
God doesn't follow this world's rules when it comes to purpose, plan, and Kingdom work. The more we accept this, the more we will go all in even when failure might be an option.
I am finding that the best thing I can do is to simply walk in obedience and walk bravely. And when I am scared to take that next big step, write those next words, speak the truth-I will trust in him for courage.
In fact, as we stop striving to be perfect and do more for God-we will fight to know God more. And it is in the knowing God where we find our peaceful place. The rest becomes less of a concern and God's heart for us becomes more clear. Comparison or even success no longer becomes necessary. We will have found and understood what matters most, and the overflow is a confidence that God's will is being accomplished through our lives.