I was recently accused of being shallow. In all my life, even as a child, I have never been called shallow. It was spoken by someone who does not know me personally, and was a stereotype of women in general, but it still caught me completely off guard. And it really bothered me.
Some would say, 'consider the source', but truth be told ... every personal criticism should be investigated because there is often truth to it, even at the smallest level. If there is no evidence to support it, great! Move on in confidence. But if something is discovered during the process, it needs to be addressed and resolved. The Lord uses all kinds of conversations, writings, happenings, and people to show us what He needs us to see. Even a 5-year-old child can be used to show us a chink in our armor. It is not so much about the source ... it is about the statement.
I kept praying, asking the Lord to help me wrestle through my frustration and anger. My gut instinct was to approach the person and say, "That is not who I am!" I wanted to list my credentials and bring in people who know me to testify to who I really am.
But what is that? P R I D E. Pure and simple.
Someone in the world sees me as shallow, and I do not like it. But really - does it matter?!? One opinion of me (or hundreds) cannot distort the truth of what I know.
I am daughter of the King.
I am loved.
I am chosen.
I am a child of God. And HIS opinion is the only one I need to concern myself with. He knows me inside and out. He knows my every strength, and my every weakness. He knows when I am seeking my own desires and when I am focused on Him. He knows what I am thinking ... my motives ... my insecurities ... He knows all of me. And when He sees sin in my heart, He will drag me to the fire and let me get very hot and uncomfortable until He melts away all of the imperfections, all of the rough edges, and all of the ugliness. And then, after He removes me from the fire and cleans me up, He will hold up a mirror, and hopefully - I will see less of myself, and more of Him.
And THAT needs to be my focus. Worrying about how Sally, Bob, Jimbo, and Guinevere see me should never enter my thoughts. My only thought should be ...
What does CHRIST see when He looks at me?
And the only answer should be: Himself.
Flawed and distorted perhaps, since I will not be fully sanctified until I dwell in glory, but His face should be taking up more and more of the image, while my face continues to fade away.
Am I shallow? I don't think so. But I must spend every day looking into the face of Christ to make sure that the image I have of myself in my mind is accurate. The enemy wants me to live in the flesh and consider myself acceptable in my sinful state. But God commands me to take up my cross daily, die to self, and walk in the Spirit. And the only way to do that is to know the difference between the two.
I do not know what everyone in the world thinks of me, and it doesn't matter.
I know Who I Am IN CHRIST.
And that -
is good enough for me!