My almost-6-year-old son lost his mind when his older sister had a friend over to play yesterday. He went spastic desperately trying to get her attention. He talked in a strange voice and pulled a plastic taranchula out of her ear. She wasn’t impressed. I even saw her yawn in the middle of one of his boisterous routines. Classic.
But to be honest, I can do the same thing. I may veil my ways with politically correct maturity. I may not slap myself in the head to get you to like me. But deep down, my flesh still wants to please you. Deep down I have to fight to remember the why behind any of my actions.
For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
I have to consciously remember why I want my marriage to honor God or my home to stay (somewhat) clean or my kids to obey. Because it’s too easy to color the pretty picture just so you don’t point fingers or gossip about my choices. As if people have nothing better to do than think about you and me.
But if we dug up the root of all that striving for man’s approval, we’d find insecurity. Because when we aren’t secure in what our Maker says about us, we flounder around for the approval of people. We change our hair or give a look or grab the reins of control because we fear what they will think or say. And that’s not freedom.
Freedom comes when we live and dance for God alone. When we seek Him earnestly, with all our heart, and trust Him to take the lead. It may mean that kids run far and wide for a season. It may mean that people misunderstand us. It may mean that laundry stays piled in the hallway. But we can still live free, even in the messy, if our eyes remain on the One True Thing.
Fill me, Lord…
How have you seen this battle for man’s approval in your own life?
How do you overcome it?
For my Sermon on the Mount friends, we press on not to please people, but to hide His Word in our hearts. It is life to us! Much love to each of you!
And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.