I think that most of us have battled with the fear of man more than once in our lives. It’s a tough issue – especially for us girls. We like to look pretty and be pleasing to everyone, but that doesn’t always work out as well as we’d like.
I personally have had a desperate struggle with the fear of man, especially over the past couple of years. The enemy has been trying to tear down my standards by sending me thoughts like, “Well, everybody else is doing it!” But I’ve found that doing something just because it is the “in” thing is a terrible way to live. Just because a lot of people do it doesn’t make it right.
So much these days, we as Christian girls are swept along with the world, doing the “in” thing because it’s “cool” and will make us popular and feel accepted. But just fitting in with the crowd doesn’t make us stand out as daughters of the King. Doing what everyone else is doing doesn’t give the world a refreshing picture of a pure and joyful young woman who is living for her Savior and not concerned about what the world thinks.
So how do we get out of the rut of doing what everyone else is doing? How do we step out of the level of superficial comfort, where we are accepted because we look and act like everyone else? How do we stretch beyond what the world is doing, and instead live our lives for Jesus and Him alone?
These are some of the questions that I have been struggling with. I am a person who likes to blend in. I don’t like to stand out or be considered “weird”. So if I am with others and they start to talk about something that is rude or uncalled for, I tend to laugh and joke along with them. Or if they start picking on someone, I tend to just go with the flow. Is that the way God wants me to act? Of course not!
So I can see that my struggle is with the fear of man versus the fear of God. Do I want to please people and do what they are doing and try to “fit in” with the crowd? Or do I want to please God, go down the less-traveled path, and stand for Him?
The Lord has been showing me how to overcome the fear of man by finding my identity in Jesus Christ. “Identity” means uniqueness, personality, character, and individuality. We have all been made different – after all, no two fingerprints are the same. We have all been created by God with our own uniqueness. When we try to pattern ourselves after other people, it is like telling God, “I don’t like the way that You’ve made me; I want to look just like someone else.” Finding your identity in Christ means finding your uniqueness in the Kingdom of God. God has created each one of us with different talents and personalities, and He wants us to use them, not to cover them up and try to be like everyone else.
If we are close to Jesus, and we are studying His Word and doing what we believe in our hearts He wants us to do, then we don’t have to worry about what people think of us. As we become increasingly consumed with Jesus Christ, the fear of man will disappear. We are no longer interested in pleasing people; we are only focused on Jesus and we want to please Him. What everyone else thinks falls way behind. Jesus is the only One who matters anymore.
When your focus is on what people think, then your focus is off God. That’s a scary thought! How many times have we made God’s thoughts less important to us than what people think? How many times have we put the fear of man before the fear of God? The awesome thing is that God is always there to forgive us, no matter what we’ve done. (See 1 John 1:9.)
Do not waste the precious time of your youth worrying about what people think of you. Focus on God, and place Him at the center of your life once again. ©
~ Written by Melody Dornink, used with permission from http://www.thekingsdaughtermag.com