Who’s Voice Counts?

It seemed like any other recess in sixth grade. A group of us guys were all outside playing when it happened. I overheard a girl tell one of my friends that she didn’t like me. I was devastated. Now, this wasn’t someone I particularly cared for either, but the words stung all the same. Someone didn’t like me. To be honest, that had never occurred to me before. I went home that afternoon wounded and trying to figure out what I could do differently.

I learned a very important lesson that day—No matter what you do, you will never be liked by everyone. Even more important is the lesson I learned later: The most important opinion to hear is God’s voice, not the voice of people. “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” (Galatians 1:10). If you live your life trying to please everyone, you will only fail. Approval-seeking from others will only serve to get you in trouble. We must focus on what God sees in you and desires for you. That will lead to a life well-lived.

So what does God want from you? He wants you to live a life that is pleasing to Him and set apart. He wants you to love your neighbors, love yourself and have an attitude of service to all around you. He wants you to recognize that you are no better than anyone else. We are equal in His eyes. He wants you to rest in His hope and strength. And more than anything, He wants you to know, that even when you fall short of His standards, He loves you unconditionally.

In all of us, there is a little boy or girl wanting to be liked. And that is not bad in itself. The danger comes when you make those opinions count more than what God thinks. God views you the same each and every day. You are His beloved creation, made in His image. There is nothing that can separate you from His love.

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