I am more often than I’d like to admit the hardest on myself…not because I set some unreasonably high standard for myself, but because I often feel like I have let others down. I feel as though their expectations of me are incredibly high and I have utterly dropped the many balls that they’ve thrown while I’m on the unicycle. It’s not fair to others just as much as it’s not fair to myself. I’ve come to realize what that’s called (thanks in large part to Crosspoint TV’s pastor, Pete Wilson’s sermon). It’s approval addiction…more importantly though it’s idolatry and it’s sin. I’m putting more thought and worry into what others may or may not be thinking of me than I do of how my actions, speech, and thoughts are or are not bringing glory to God.
A huge realization hit me this afternoon while I was listening to Pete’s sermon again. Then the questions started pouring in my brain. I was sincerely worried that I might fall off the elliptical I was on when God’s word hit me (Thanks Pete for that one). I thought I’d share a little of that now…
What would it look like if I stopped caring how others perceived me? Better yet, what would it look like if I stopped striving to meet the approval of everyone else and instead devoted my thoughts, my actions, my mind, and my heart to pursuing after God in everything?
Romans 5:8 explicitly tells me that in my filth, in my sin, in the ugliest possible state I could ever be in to God, He loved me. Not only that but He loved me in that state so much that He couldn’t bear to see me continue on it that way. So He made a way, through His Son, for me to be in loving fellowship with Him. Not just once-which is way more than I ever could deserve…but always. You get that? ALWAYS
Now if the Holy God of the universe can love me, accept me, want me so much at my worst, why would I ever seek anything else? Which is the exact question that I ruminated on through the last mile in my training…and throughout this evening it’s been weighing me. Going back over Romans 5:8 again and again, I see my grossness contrasted with God’s righteousness. I see Him pouring out Himself in me so that I may be molded into His image…and with Him. Why would I strive for the approval of someone else over Him? I firmly believe God wanted me to see that today…and trust in Him that I can lay down this addiction without fear, without questioning, and without picking it back up. I must humble myself before Him in this knowing He’s the only One whom I seek to please.