What Others Think vs. What God Thinks

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In today’s first reading from Exodus 32, Moses has a little heart-to-heart with God, asking Him to relent from destroying His people. And God relented. A wonderful statement on the power of prayer. And in the Gospel reading from John 5, Jesus talks about accepting praise. He says, “I do not accept human praise.” And to the Jews, He says, “How can you believe, when you accept praise from one another and do not seek the praise that comes from the only God?”

Jesus didn’t need praise or approval from other people. In fact, quite the contrary. He said an awful lot of things that ticked off an awful lot of people. But it didn’t matter to Him. He knew He was doing the Father’s will. And that was His ultimate motivation.

I recently got an angry message from someone who was put off, in part, by the fact that I told my listeners, "I don't really care what you think of me." This person thought that was arrogant. I certainly didn't mean for it to come off that way, but perception is reality. I used to care A LOT about what others thought of me. But I find as I get older that that is less and less important to me. I want to care more about what God thinks of me, and how I am carrying out my mission.

Father, forgive us for those times when we turn our backs on you, just to win the approval of people. Show us today Your will, and give us the grace to accomplish it, regardless of what others think. Amen.

Today’s Readings


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