Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Proverbs 3: 3-4, "Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man."

I ordered and purchased a bracelet this year. It has the words love and faithfulness on it. It was an attempt of having a more constant reminder of that which I want to strive for and who it is I want to please.
You see, like so many people, I struggle with wanting to be "approved" of. I mean, doesn't everybody crave for approval?
Maybe not.
But I believe it is a very natural and human thing to desire approval.

Approval... to find favor in... to be pleased with ....

I remember when my peers' approval was the most important thing in my life. I wanted to be "cool". I wanted to be liked. And I did things to gain approval. Nobody even asked me to. No one needed to. I just did. And I loved the response I got in return.
"I was somebody."
This mostly happened in high school. I went into high school with many goals.
Goals that went forgotten, as I quickly got sidetracked by the attention I got from boys.... and from peers in general.
" I belonged."
The approval of others, however, can sometimes trip us up. Sometimes the approval of others bears strong demands. And sometimes we lose our ground. And we find ourselves all alone.
You see, while seeking the approval of others, I learned that it can be a very conditional thing.
I am accepted as long as...
As long as I am doing that which is approved of.
When I fail to do what is expected, however....or when I don't meet the standard... and I fall short, I face the dark side or the flip side of approval... rejection.
And oh, how rejection hurts!

I remember as a little girl wanting so badly, to have my father's approval. I wanted him to be pleased with me. But I seldom experienced that. In my memories, I almost always, see a frown on his face, as he looks at me.

I guess that's why the desire to fulfill that "need for approval" felt so vital for so long.

What's interesting is that after the many "trial and errors" in my life, in my quest for approval, I have found myself time and time again flat on my back looking up... to the one whose favor is most important. And He made no demands.
While seeking someone else's approval, the "let downs" always lead me to Him , who does delight in me. The one who has approved of me. Not because I've done anything high and mighty, but because of His Son's favor.

And so after all of these years, if you ask me who am I trying to please? I will say, "may love and faithfulness never leave me; as I bind them and write them on my heart, so that I may find favor and a good name in the sight of my God and savior".

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