Lately, I’ve been “moderately depressed,” according to an online survey I took on a medical website. It’s not really an ongoing feeling–just random spurts here and there. I understand that depression has a deeper meaning to it than just sadness, so I’ve been thinking to myself: “Why do I feel this way? Why is this happening? I know God is always with me; I don’t understand.” Then I realized that I’ve been putting my worth into one thing, the wrong thing: being desirable and accepted.
Now, this doesn’t mean I desire a man to want me.
I want people to like me–to want to be my friend. I want to please people of authority so that they too will appreciate me. I want to be a leader so I feel like I’m doing something right. I want to do well in school and in life so that others, especially my parents, are proud to say they know me.
I’m a natural people-pleaser, though I never fully understood why. Whenever I do something nice for someone, part of me wishes they would show some form of appreciation, a sign that they are, in fact, pleased. I want to please them so in turn, they will desire and accept me and my company. My heart has always been in a weird place; I know that now.
I also know that in this world, it doesn’t matter if the people around me desire me at all. Why? Because God loves, desires and accepts me more than I could ever imagine, and I didn’t even have to do anything for it. I didn’t have to make good grades, go to Colorado for leadership training, or be a leader for Him to want me any more than I could attempt to convince Him.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no one can boast.”
– Ephesians 2:8-9
I haven’t exactly been trying to be on God’s “good side,” but by knowing how everyone feels about me is irrelevant, it’s comforting to know that God cares. I don’t have to prove anything to HIM for His acceptance, and His is the only one that truly matters in the long run.
Jesus and his disciples were persecuted and murdered because some people had no desire to hear what they had to say. Jesus was undesirable. He went through all of that for me, and every single person in the world, so that we can be free.
I want to be like Jesus. Maybe not completely undesirable, but I want to do things in God’s name, even if I am labeled as undesirable. Like Jesus. He had a true servant’s heart; he didn’t serve others just to be recognized by them as a kind man.
A few weeks ago in church, my pastor said that a servant often goes unthanked. So having a servant’s heart means that I would have to get used to it. To have a servant’s heart is to serve others to show them the love of God through my actions, not just so I can get some sort of feedback from them. This is what Jesus did. He even washed the feet of his disciples because he loved them–feet that were probably filthy because they had just walked a long way in the sand while wearing sandals.
In order to love others like Jesus, I know I need to stop worrying about how others feel about me, that their opinions don’t matter. I will love everyone, no matter who they are, the way God loves them: no strings attached.