I cannot stay stuck in approval addiction.
Two of the first (and most impactful) lessons I learned from running a business for 25 years:
- It is impossible to please all of the people all of the time.
- It is my choice to frustrate and exhaust myself striving to do so.
In actuality, I have spent a lifetime trying to manage what other people think of me. And I have paid a price for that effort- namely a deep feeling of insecurity, and a nagging sense of fraudulence. I have spent the better part of the last 15 years trying- through God’s grace- to undo those destructive patterns.
That’s why I have been surprised to find myself falling back into those attitudes and behaviors in preparation to serve in Thailand. In the going, I have discovered a strong temptation to believe that everyone has to like me. A lot. Somehow, dependence on others for prayer and financial support has translated into dependence on others for approval.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. – Galatians 5:1
Slavery comes in many forms.