All true believers are responsible for faithfully performing the duties that Christ has tasked them with (I Corinthians 4:2). This sometimes is a hard thing for us to do, because first we have to figure out 1: what our mission is, and 2:how to go about doing it. To make matters, worse, virtually every one we know will have different opinions on questions one and two, and many of them are not afraid to vocalize them. They will criticize us for pursuing the wrong thing and for doing it in the wrong way. Sometimes we need to listen to these criticisms, because there may be some truth to them. But other times we need to ignore them, because they do nothing but discourage us. Ultimately, we are not responsible for doing what other Christians think we should do: we are only responsible for doing what God wants us to do. The Apostle Paul boldly states that it is God’s opinion, not the opinion of other Christians that really matters:
I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. 4 My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. (I Corinthians 4:3-4 NIV)
So just because someone else accuses you of not fulfilling your God-given task does not mean that you have failed. Likewise, just because they say that you are successful does not mean that you have truly succeeded. In the same vein, your own opinion of your failure and success does not matter: When the day of judgment comes you will not be judged according to your own opinion or the opinions of others: you will be judged according to the “opinion” of God, which is based entirely on truth. Therefore, let us not judge ourselves by the criticism or praise of others, nor let us try too hard to make ourselves happy: let us strive to make God happy. Let us work hard to change our viewpoint to become more like God’s viewpoint through reading the Bible and through prayer. In the end, God’s view of how we lived our life on Earth is the only view that counts.