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True, they will either be your heavenly cheerleaders or your heavenly sand paper. But, in either case, they have purpose.
I once heard said that Jesus' family did not recognize who He was, spiritually ~ that they only knew Him as family. So, I imagine He knew that hurt, too.
None-the-less, we may fail to realize that others are also looking at us to validate who they are. And though we can't be their everything, we can make sure our mouth doesn't call others things they are not.
When we have checked our heart and motive, and our heart condemns us not, God is pleased. He doesn't look for perfect people, just perfect hearts ~ as God knows who we are spiritually. Therein is where we get our confidence, assurance, self esteem, and such.
And even when our behavior is out of line, due to other's blows, God sees source. Yet, as we grow in seeking and accepting only God's approval, we have less need to respond to negative input ~ as their opinion isn't what counts.
When we depend upon people for our self worth, we set both them and us up to fail.
People fail us. But, God never will.
© 2005 by Joyce C. Lock http://www.angelslight.org/viewauthor.php?id=8 http://our.homewithgod.com/heavenlyinspirations/ This writing may be used in its entirety, with credits in tact, for non-profit ministering purposes.
Joyce C. Lock is a published author, poet, and columnist. In addition, she founded and maintains the email ministries "Heavenly Inspirations" http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HeavenlyInspirations/. Joyce's writings encourage us in our relationship with God and each other.