by Meaghan Grable
For as long as I can remember, I have been trying to prove my worth to everyone around me.
When I was younger, my world was flipped upside down with my parents’ divorce and all I could do was try to keep the peace by striving to earn their approval with everything I did.
As years passed, the standards of what I thought I needed to live up to grew as well. Friends, teachers, random strangers—I constantly felt like I was never good enough, and I carried that weight with me.
More recently, the struggle with living up to others’ expectations became too heavy to ignore.
I found myself in situations where others were unhappy with the choices I was making because it didn’t benefit them. I questioned if I was a good enough wife/mother/daughter/friend. Honestly, I felt like I was failing in all aspects of my life no matter how much I turned to God. But why? Ultimately, I was living for the world and not Christ.
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me(Galatians 2:20)
As Paul is writing in Galatians 2:20, he is pleading with the Galatians to see that their value should not come from their works or what other people think of them, but from Christ alone. And that couldn’t be more applicable in our world today as well.
The world will always have expectations of us and everyone will have an opinion that may not align with yours, but the truth we can cling to is Paul’s words, “I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” We don’t have to be slaves to the world’s expectations because of Christ’s love and sacrifice for us. We are free from sin because of the cross. While I have called myself a Christian for most of my life, I am still learning how to make Christ the center of my life and block out the world’s expectations around me. This is a truth I need reminding of every day. As Tara Leigh Cobble said in The Bible Recap podcast on Galatians: “If I could earn my own righteousness, then He died for nothing!” When I feel the weight of others’ standards, I want to remember what Christ did for me on the cross and lean on His holiness, instead of my own or that of someone around me.
Love Jesus. Live Outward.
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