“My name’s Blurryface and I care what you think
Wish we could turn back time, to the good old days
When our momma sang us to sleep but now we’re stressed out”
These are lyrics of the chorus to the song “Stressed Out” by Twenty One Pilots. Why has this song become so popular? Besides the fact that it is very catchy, “Stressed Out”is an extremely relatable song. In this song, Twenty-One Pilots write about missing their childhood. The days of not having to worry, about not having to care how others viewed them. The writer of this song, Tyler Joseph, wanted to convey insecurity and worrying about what others think as negative, even evil. This song reached the top of the billboard charts because everyone identifies with it.
Everyone has, at some point, cared about what others have thought about them. Everyone has done something to impress another person. Most live their entire lives attempting to impress others. Why? Why do people care so much about how others view them that they will live their lives trying to feel accepted, loved, desired, envied by other people? Because God has placed in us a desire to be loved. For those who are not saved, it is a desire that will never be filled.
Stressed Out’s message is strong running theme in the Bible: if you live your life as unto men, you will always be disappointed (stressed out if you will). Ephesians 6:7 says “With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men”. Colossians 3:23 says “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men”. God hates it when people live their lives for other people and not for Him. When we seek to impress other men, we are glorifying ourselves. God’s desire for us to glorify Him only, not ourselves. As Christians, it should be very important to us that we not bring recognition to ourselves but to God alone.
One subject Jesus brought up multiple times with the Pharisees was the problem of their desire to impress men. The Pharisees kept all the commandments and accepted only a strict interpretation of the law. Jesus said of the Pharisees “They do all their deeds to be seen by others” (Matthew 23:5).
The Pharisees, although appearing to be perfect, were no better than the worst of sinners. Everything they did was to impress other people. They would pray in the streets so others could see them. They were not actually praying to God, they were trying to be seen as holy. Jesus taught of this that “when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (Matthew 6:6).
The Pharisees were a lot like people in our culture today. Although they may have done tried to impress people in a different way than people do today, the Pharisees really were no different. They lived their lives to impress others, just as everyone does today.
Am I like a Pharisee? Yes. It is hard for me to say that, but I am like a Pharisee. I do things all the time that I hope will impress other people. I do care what people think. I care way too much. Like Tyler Joseph, writer of “Stressed Out”, I sometimes wish I could turn back time to the days that I couldn’t care less what people thought. But I cannot. I do not think I will ever not care what people think about me. I am a sinner. This is something that we as Christians must pray about.
We need to ask ourselves daily when faced with choices if what we’re about to do is to glorify God or to glorify ourselves. Are we posting pictures on Instagram of our Bible and a highlighter to show God how much we love Him? Or are we doing it to prove to others that we are holy and Christ-like? As Christians, we need to question ourselves and our motives daily, lest we become like the Pharisees.
“Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”(Matthew 23:12).