Saturday, September 22, 2007

Laying Aside Pleasing People

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? I would not be a servant of Christ. Galations 1:10

Trusting in God involves the loss of our agendas, our flaming torch, so that we die to our inclination to live a lie, It requires forfeiting our rigid, self-protective, God-dishonoring ways of relating in order to embrace life as it is meant to be lived:in humble dependence on God and passionate involvement with others.

At times, I feel as if I am bent to live for people's approval. How am I suppose to run my race to the glory of God when I am always looking around to see if others are pleased with the way I talk or look or perform my daily duties. Sometimes, I feel as if I am always trying to seek acceptance from others, instead of being a God pleaser, I am a people pleaser. I am really trying to grow in this area!

Nancy Groom writes: Approval junkies live as hostages to outher people's opinions and judgemnts regarding their thoughts, motives, feelings, or behaviors. Approval seekers look good:they have to...But people-pleasing isn't godly, nor is it healthy. Appeasers usually end up feelings used, unappreciated, and driven to become all thigs to all people in order to maintain their inmage and receive continued approval. They appear giving but in fact they are enslaved to their instiable need to be admired.

At times I think I give into peer preasure because I have a fear of man, instead of a fear for God. I hate to admit it but it would be a lie if I said I NEVER fall into peer preasure. My need to want to be liked has lead to gossip and course joking in the past. I have really been working on this area of my life.

In 1 Thessalonians 2 2-12 Paul gives me a perfect example of how I should live my life. Vs 2 Paul shard the gospel even though he had strong opposition.

Vs 4 Paul says we are not trying to please men, we are trying to please God who test our hearts.

Paul also wrote, "I am a free man and own no master;but I have made myself every man's servant, to win over as many as possible" ! Cor. 9:19

Paul didn't want them to look upon him as being great but he wanted them to know how great God is. If I could replace my approval-seeking tendencies, I could more openly share my faith with others.

I want to not be a people pleaser but have a love for people. John 13:34-35 Tells me to love one another so people will know Christ is in me. Love is an action : to love is to serve. 1 Thes. 5:14-15 Tells me I am to encouage and help the weeker brother, I need to warm them with love and patients. Hebrews 10:23-25 Tells me to spur one another towards love. Encourage each other, meet together.

In order to do this, I need to fix my eyes on Jesus. The Lord deeply loved and ministered to people, but He never com-promised the truth or His mission because of what people might think.

Matthew 9:9-13 Jesus disciples were upset with the crowd Jesus was with. Jesus told them He has come not to call the righteous but the sinners to repentance.

The Lord cared deeply about the Lost. He didn't care that everyone was looking for Him. He cared about lost souls.

It is not easy to lay aside my people pleasing. It is a slow process, but I'm beginning to experience the incredible freedom of letting go of that weight in my life. I am trying to fix my heart on pleasing only God, when doing this I find that I can give myself to others in ways that I never could before, when I was intent on their approval. I want to be sensitive and open to others' opinion of me, but I no longer become paralyzed because I haven't pleased everyone I am around each day.

Lord, help me to grow even more in this area of my life


Kathy said...

Wow, you have brought out some important things to think about for all of us! Thank you!

e-Mom said...

I like this: I want to not be a people pleaser but have a love for people. What a subtle (but major) difference! God bless you, Lori. Hugs, e-Mom

Amel's Realm said...

This is a WONDERFUL post that makes me think hard, Lori! GBU!

Corry said...

You are not the only one struggling with this, I do as well!
I am in the same process as you are and it's slow going, but... surely. :-) We only fail when we quit and we can do anything through Christ who strengthens us!

God's Grace.