God has funny ways of teaching us lessons, doesn’t He?
Especially when it’s a reoccurring lesson that seems to be showing up over and over and over again (which usually means we aren’t applying what we have learned the first time around!)
Anywho, I have really been working on resting in my identity in Jesus rather than seeking the affirmation of others.
It’s something Jesus and I have had VERY long talks about and one of those reoccurring lessons for me that I just can’t seem to “get” and apply in my life.
It’s not that I doubt the importance of my confidence in Christ or that I do not understand why “people-pleasing” is such a bad profession; I know, all too well, the harmful effects on one’s life, perspective and self-worth that it can take.
However, when it comes down to it, do you know what I finally realized it all boiled down to?
I cared more about what others thought of me than I cared about what Jesus thought of me.
TRY TO RECOVER FROM THAT HEARTCHECK!
Seriously though, that realization shook me to my core.
“No I don’t, Jesus! I promise! I love you more. I know you are the only opinion that truly matters”, I desperately try to convince Him.
And He says, “So if you know the Conductor is the one you should impress, why do you play always facing the crowd? My love, what you focus on becomes what matters to you. You must turn around.”
I think I was just standing still when all of this was going through my mind and I am not sure what I was doing with my hands? I know tears were streaming from my eyes.
And He followed with, “You will always play the same song if you stare at the crowd; only the Conductor has the ability to teach you new music.”
And that was it.
No crazy trumpet sounds came out of Heaven (except in my head), Jesus Himself didn’t come to the earth as flesh again and little angels didn’t surround me and dance while holding my hand.
But you better believe my heart danced.
It was as if this lesson that I had been trying so hard to really learn and truly apply was given to me in a language that I understood, believed and felt click within every ounce of my body.
I just wanted to hug Jesus and say, “I WANT TO MAKE MUSIC!!!!!! New music, with You, Jesus. New songs. I am ready to turn my back to the crowd!”
So, let me ask you this, where are you at on this?
Are you fixated on the opinions of others, paralyzed by their criticism and prideful because of their praise?
Are you fearful to not care what others say, as that is what you always have done?
Friends, let’s do it together.
Seriously, I KNOW we all want to have a world-changers party full of music that is fresh and relevant, soaked in truth and mercy, rooted in love and hope, and notes that scream of a different kind of life!
But we can’t learn those chords or those notes while facing the same way we always have.
I know I don’t want to get to my old age and wish that I could have just let go of what everyone else thought about me.
I know I don’t want to have to look at my kids and tell them, “I wasn’t ever able to escape my fear and inability to abandon the affirmation of this world but I hope you can”.
No, I want to be a living example of that.
And you may respond with: “I’m in. I mean, that all sounds really great and stuff but how do you plan on doing this? Just suddenly changing?”
And my response is, yes. You turn around and play for the Conductor today.
And when tomorrow comes, you will remember how peaceful and relaxed it felt and you will play for Him again.
And as you begin to learn new songs, you will realize that your “audience of One” was the only audience your heart was ever really created to play for. Everyone else was just, well, extras.
So, come on.
The Conductor is waiting.
He has a song on His lips, a melody in His heart and His instruction is always done in love.
You, student, just have to be willing to take the first step: Turn around.
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in Him.” –Psalm 40:3