Shadowing living is not for the people of God unless they are living under His shadow (see Psalms 91:1). And, constantly living, ordering, and covering your life by what others think is a trap. It is not up to you to change people’s minds about you or to constantly seek their approval for this or that. If you are living for Christ, then you are living to be approved by Him and not to win a positive vote from others (see Galatians 1:10). Recognize that some people will never look at you in a positive light no matter what you do to “prove” yourself worthy to them. Some people take very long or will never get over your past or your mistakes and will tend to look at you with eyes of suspicion and mistrust and categorize you as such in their thoughts. At the same time, there are others who will keep their thoughts focused on what they see as lack and short-comings in your life, and to them, you just don’t measure up.
That’s why the Bible tells us, “The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe,” (Proverbs 29:25). The job of the Christian, who knows Christ bore the worst part of us and our sins on the cross, and that it is He and His Spirit that is empowering us, is not to live life like cowering dogs with tails tucked in because of people. It’s not to let oneself continually carry the burden of guilt, shame, or misgivings of your abilities that others try to force on you when Jesus already paid it all, gave it all, and supplied it all. That kind of life is a trap and it is dangerous because one will always be consumed by what others think. And, when one is so worried about what others think, they are less focused on what God thinks.
But, God said, “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds,” (Jeremiah 17:10, NASB). God is the only judge whose standards of living we need to be concerned about because He holds the results and the rewards. He knows our every move in life and even our innermost thoughts (Psalm 139:2). He knows the works we do (Isaiah 66:18). He knows the secrets we hold (Psalm 44:21). He knows the plans we make (Proverbs 16:9). He knows everything about us and He also knows that Jesus Christ has freed each one of us, that is found in Him, to rise out of the shadows of the thoughts of others that you might live fully in Him and completely for Him. Trust more in what God thinks as opposed to what people think and choose to live freely in Him today!