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Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Only One Opinion Matters

In Matthew 5:14 it says, “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.” (NLT)

If we’re not sure who we really are, then we can be manipulated and molded by the pressures, problems, and people around usand that leads to stress!

Culture is constantly trying to fit me into its mold. When I’m confused and unclear about my identity, when I don’t really know who I am, it makes me more vulnerable to the culture’s influence. Until I settle in my mind that God loves me unconditionally and that I’m a child of God, I’m going to be prone to stress

Jesus never had any doubts about his identity. In fact, 18 times in Scripture he publicly declared who he was. These are called his “I am” statements, like, I am the Light of the World. I am the Son of God. I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. I am the Bread of Life. Jesus made it clear that he knew exactly who he was.

In John 8:18, Jesus said, “I testify on my own behalf” (GNT). He didn’t need other people to tell him who he was. He didn’t look to others for validation.

When I depend on other people’s opinions for validation, I won’t be resilient to stress. Because if I don’t know who I am, then other people will decide for me. They’ll force me into a mold, and I’ll get stressed trying to be someone I’m not. I’ll end up pretending and wearing a mask. It will wear me out! This reminds me of Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (NIV)

Jesus knew he was the Light of the World. But he also said the same thing about me: “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden” (Matthew 5:14 NLT). I need to realize how special I am. Not because of what other people say but because of what God says. There’s nobody in the world exactly like me.

Can a city on top of a hill be hidden? Its light at night can be seen for miles. If I live for Christ, I will glow like lights, showing others what Christ is like. I hide my light by (1) being quiet when I should speak, (2) going along with the crowd, (3) denying the light, (4) letting sin dim my light, (5) not explaining my light to others, or (6) ignoring the needs of others. I need to be a beacon of truth and not shut my light off from the rest of the world.

I must accept the truth about memy strengths and my limitations and weaknesses. God made me with all of those things, and he has given me everything I need to do his will.

When I accept that, I’ll be secure in my identity and a lot less stressed.