I admit it. I’m a rebel – a non-conformist of sorts. It seems contradictory to my nature to say it out loud. After all, I’m a compliant first born – a reliable German shepherd you might say. But I’m also a bit rebellious by nature.
You see, I just cannot, nay I will not, allow other people to define who I am or make me think like they do. No other person is going to take up living with free rent in my brain. I am not going to spend my time wondering what others think or what they will do or how they will behave if I do this or don’t do that. I simply refuse to!
When I was in college I read a book called When People are Big and God is Small by Edward Welch. Although I was already a bit rebellious by nature when it came to putting stock into what others thought of me, this book really cemented my thinking about people and about God. I was made aware of just how much one’s view of God impacts the way they view the world and the way they view other people.
Most people have things quite backward in life. They really put a lot of stock in what others say and do. Concern for what others think about them becomes the focal point of thought. The focus on most people’s lives is comparing themselves to others and worrying about what others will say or do. Everything becomes about who they are in relationship to those other people. Do they measure up? Are they good enough? Are they doing enough so that others will like them? This is crazy to me because other people are just as messed up as I am! Why would I give them any latitude in terms of defining who I am as a person? It is just not healthy to make people so big that others determine who I am and what I do.
Now when it comes to God, what He thinks about me is what really matters. The problem is that most people see God as small. They see God as someone who is perhaps like one of their parents, some other person in their lives, or perhaps even like themselves. God is not small. People are small, and God is big. God is bigger than we could ever dream or imagine. God is the creator of the universe. All that exists is His. His perspective is what matters!
In a world filled with group think and social comparison that only create dysfunction, anxiety, and distress, it’s high time we put our focus on something greater than other people. We need to spend time getting to know God and learning what He wants of us, not worrying about what others think and what they want from us. People are small, but God is big. He’s ginormous. He’s incomprehensibly bigger than anything we can imagine. If you’re going to worry about something or someone, worry about what He thinks of you! Your perspective will be quite different.