Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Why should I fear man?

I am a pleaser. I don't know why he impresses on me the need to share it except maybe I will speak to someone else who struggles with this. Maybe he wants to set you free as well.Perhaps it's for my children to read about one day. Or Maybe it's part of walking humbly with my God.

I remember repenting of it as a young girl. And as a teen. And in college I went forward to ask God to take it away. But it rages against me. It beats me up and laughs at me calling me coward and weak.
I think I have it conquered. That it's dead and gone. And then boom I see it once again. 

I am so thankful for a merciful God who sees my weakness and loves me any way. 
A Father who knows how I am formed and is still working on shaping me.
He strips me of it through adversity.
And I am free.
Then somehow I find I pick it up and carry it again.. 

The battle rages on. And I will fight. I cannot stop the fight.
I wish I could write that I used to struggle with this and I no longer do.
That I could give you a 10 step program on what to do to find a cure.
But this is all I got.
The testimony of a girl who with tear stained cheeks tells you the behind the smile look at life.

 I am a pleaser. A man pleaser. And honestly that may sound so nice. Who doesn't want a pleaser around? But really it's ugly. And self driven. 
Pleasers want to be liked. And so we please. We accomidate. We say yes when we should say no. We worry that our friends will one day walk away if we don't say the right thing or give the right gift or spend enough time or help them when they need it. We worry that we will be bad mom's if we don't do for our kids. Or bad wives if we aren't the virtuous women we think we ought to be.We worry that people will find us offensive or that we will let them down..and we eventually do because sometimes we just fail. And when we do fail we beat ourselves up because we should have been better pleasers. It's a vicious cycle and exhausting. And when we get on the crazy train it's hard to get off.
Sometimes pleasers think we have overcome because we don't care anymore what "they" think. Only to find that we have found a new group to please. We carry a lot of "should's and should not's" on our shoulders.

Jesus was pretty clear of his thoughts of man pleasers... One of the characteristics of the Pharisee's was that they loved praise from men more than praise from God.(John 12:43) 

I was recently reading a book by Brother Yun. 
Brother Yun is a preacher and Evangelist from China. He had this to say about praise of man.
"I faced a new kind of problem after moving to the West.While I was in prison in China, I found it easy to praise the Lord because everyone hated me except Jesus. After  I started traveling and speaking around the world, however, I found there were many brothers and sisters who clapped and cheered everywhere I spoke, and they always said nice things to me. This was a new kind of temptation - the praise of men. It is a dangerous minefield that every preacher(or person) must walk very carefully through, making sure he gives all glory to God and doesn't take any of it into his own heart. To do so brings bondage and a spiritual imprisonment  I have found that the secret to unlocking this freedom in Christ is to praise God wholeheartedly for God is spirit and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth. John 4:24. Whether we are being persecuted and tortured or receiving the adulation of men, the solution is the same-praise and worship of our heavenly Father."

And so I am.
 I am praising God and giving him glory for what he has done in my life. 
He is the one from whom I long to gain approval.
He is much easier to please. He doesn't have a long list of expectations I have to perform to be acceptable.
 I'm not "in" with him  one day, until I fail or until he gets done with me then I'm "out". He always loves me. 
And in the end he is the one I will stand before and give an account to for what I have done with what he has given me. 
I am his. And  often I risk looking like a fool but it's okay because I want to fear God alone.   

As I seek him I am learning to quiet myself before him listening to his voice instead of the voices around me. That's when I can hear what he wants from me.  In spite of what else may be calling my name. I want him more.

I often blog heartfelt things.
This is not out of my wanting to please man.... because actually I'm not really sure it does...but my need to be obedient to him.

This is one of those times.
I choose him.
And it feels really good.






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