I find that people in general spend far too much time in consideration of what others think of them and what can be done to influence that perception. One of the most frustrating, but at the same time liberating, things you can understand is that people see you based on their own internal needs. I say frustrating because we all want to be seen as we are and not according to stereotypes or generalities. I say liberating because all the effort spent to influence another’s opinion of you can be redirected more constructively. Early pioneers needed to see all Native Americans as savages, because it justified their robbing, pillaging, and killing of them. Around the founding of our country the majority of white Americans needed to see black people as inferior, because it justified the oppression and exploitation that made their own lives more comfortable. Just like these examples, but on a far less diabolical scale, people often see you in everything other than the light of truth. A more important concern for the individual is how one sees them self, and how one arrives at that opinion of them self. See, it is not others that have us bound, it is our own view of our selves. If we derive an opinion of ourselves based primarily on social feedback, then we are guaranteed to have self-esteem issues and a host of other complexes. Social feedback can be important when it comes from the right sources. Unfortunately, society at large has the tendency to be swayed by popular opinion, which is manipulated through propaganda from those that would make merchandise of all people. The right sources would be those people or groups which have their values based on the universal needs of all people instead of merely their own or a select few. The right source is those that walk in love. To be more specific, I am referring to those who live in unity with God for He is Love. Ultimately, we should derive our sense of self from God; after all, we are created in His image. God is neither white nor black nor yellow nor brown nor red. God is spirit, and we have to learn to see ourselves as spiritual beings, even though we have physical bodies. We can’t allow the carnal and temporal things of this physical realm to dictate who we are or how we live. We have to transcend through the door of Yeshua the Christ to inherit the life we were meant to live, and to become the people we were meant to be. Once you learn to see yourself in the true light of God’s spirit, you will know real freedom.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
It’s freeing indeed, when we find our identity in Christ. Great thoughts brother!