"Uniting Christian & Jewish Clergy from Around the World"
The great impression. It almost sounds like the Great Depression of the 1930’s. The question is: why do we try to impress other people? What is it that makes us do this on a daily basis, for some, or as a habit, for others?
From a psychology point of view, it comes down to self-worth, being recognized as an individual, seeking approval.
From a biblical and theological view, one can argue that it is mankind’s sin nature that would make us strive for perfection with and towards God.
It is a very real issue and dilemma in daily life. So often one can see the effort some people go through to be perfect, to impress others, to be nice in order to fit in. And our modern day society does not provide any comfort either, in fact, it actually encourages the need to impress others, especially in the urban environment.
Technology has vastly improved our time management but greatly affected and degraded our human relationships too. Walk into any restaurant and see people busy on their phones instead of just enjoying the company of the person(s) they are dining with.
And the problem with trying to impress another individual or group of individuals is this – eventually, you grow tired and ‘slip up’ and people see right through your motives. The same goes for trying to be perfect in everything.
The wise King Solomon, under inspiration of the Spirit of God, penned these words in Proverbs 16 verses 2:
“All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, But the LORD weighs the motives.” 1
King David also affirmed the fact that God knows our hearts better than anyone else does when he wrote in the book of Psalms, chapter 44 and verse 21:
“Would not God find this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.” 2
And very early in the Old Testament God Himself declares to the prophet Samuel these words as found in the 1st book of Samuel, chapter 16 and verse 7:
‘But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart." ‘3
From the quoted Scripture it is clear that God who created us also knows us and sees right through our motives. A scary truth.
Would it not rather be more beneficial, less stressful and more enjoyable to simply be yourself, with all the hang-ups, all the faults, all the scars? Being true to yourself and how and whom God made you is what life is all about. Not impressing on others, not showing how good or how smart or how beautiful you are.
True humility never boasts. True humility never impresses others.
Be true to God, yourself and others… this is the essence of a happy and fulfilled life!
Pr. Paddick Van Zyl
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1-3 NASB New American Standard Bible Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. For Permission to Quote Information visit http://www.lockman.org, extracted from Bible Hub com http://biblehub.com/nasb/proverbs/16.htm
Image: Image Source – by Jonathan Fernstrom: http://www.imagesource.com/stock-image/Business-man-standing-on-head-09jf0005rm.html
© Paddick Van Zyl 2016