Whether we want to admit it or not, we often have someone whose opinion of us matters more than others to us. We know that it shouldn't be that important to us, but it is nonetheless.
In 1 Corinthians 4:3-5 Paul writes some challenging words:
"I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the matters of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God."Paul is pretty clear in these words that he's not concerned about what others think of him. He is concerned with what God thinks and what God sees.
Because of this, Paul kept a short account with God. He kept his conscience clear by dealing with things right away. He wasn't saying he didn't have sin and struggles in his life; but that he went to God with them right away.
Pail knew that ultimately it is only God Who can expose what is really going on in our hearts. God will always bring tit into the light so He can deal with it.
When I read these words in 1 Corinthians, my first thought is to wonder if I could say that I care very little if I'm judged by someone else, alongside Paul. The truth is, most days I couldn't. Most days I am concerned about what others think of me and their judgements of me.
I know that what God thinks of me is more important, but I don't always live like that. In a world, where judgements of other people are made all the time, it cna be difficult to not care what others think of us.
But, the reality of it is that God's judgement of us is all that will really matter. Serving Him, seeking His approval above all is what our lives should be about.
When we live our lives concerned the most with God and His approval we are freed to live the lives He intended for us to live. And God is given the room to do His work of transformation in us, as He exposes that which needs to be exposed in us and does His work on it.