“Why does this matter so much?” I asked God as I plopped down into the couch cushions in our hangout room. My mind had been spinning about how I was going to say no to something. Thoughts went round and round about disappointing people and wondering if they would be mad at me.
Did I know God wanted me to say no? I did, and yet fears and anxieties built up about how I would be disappointing people.
How did I get here? Forty-seven years old and still fearful of being a disappointment and getting people mad at me and not liking me.
I was brought to a place in scripture I got to and pray when I am asking God to examine my heart and reveal to me what is there.
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way. Psalm 139:23-24
As I spent time in God’s Word and in His presence, He began revealing the roots of this people-pleasing struggle.
When I was younger there were important people in my life who I felt like I was always disappointing. I would do or say things that were disappointing. I wasn’t very athletic or into things that others around me liked. I was much more emotional and my hearing loss was just another dynamic in the relationships around me, either at home, school, or work.
In school, the kids would make fun of me because of my speech. The teachers didn’t do anything about it. Customers would call me dumb and do other things at work, yet no one did much about it because the customer is always right.
It wasn’t one specific person or incident that caused this, it was the whole of experiences together but it led me into a period of life where I lived like the bride in the movie, “Runaway Bride”. I became everyone around me. Whoever I was with, I tried to be them because who I was, wasn’t good enough. I was trying to be who everyone would like or accept me to be.
There was a people root for me, and God revealed that there was also a God root for me.
Even though I had received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, believing He had died for me and forgiven me I had not fully received His love for me and the truth that He had created me with purpose, just as I am.
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it well.” PSalm 139:13-14
I loved this verse, and I read it often, yet my heart had not fully received it. I felt like God had made some serious mistakes with me physically, emotionally, and mentally. God’s Word had spoken to me about His love for me. I believed He loved me, but I had not truly received it, and I certainly wasn’t loving myself very well with my words or my actions.
Because I had not truly received His love, I was not able to believe how He looked at me. I was not able to believe I was made just the way He wanted me to be for what He had called me to do here on earth. I was not able to live in a way that fully followed Jesus because I was still more concerned about man’s opinion of me than God’s. I was still listening to man’s voice over God’s voice.
This is where I have been stuck for years.
God is freeing me. He has slowly peeled off layers but this process is the last layer for me and I pray as we talk about these things, that you and others will be freed as well.
First, we need to allow God to examine our hearts and show us the roots. We need to allow time to grieve, repent, and heal. Then we need to move forward with our eyes on Christ, seeking to hear God’s voice above all others, bringing ourselves, our decisions, our situations, and circumstances, and others to Him.
Let’s do this process together!!
There are three steps I want us to take today.
- Sit with the Lord today. Plop on the couch, talk to Him while doing dishes, or driving in the car. Ask Him to examine you heart and reveal the roots to you.
2. Take time to grieve, repent, and heal. The timeframe for this can’t be put in a box and I won’t do that to you. Let God take the time He needs to bring you through that process.
3. Seek God on the steps you need to take to move forward with your eyes on Jesus and seeking God’s voice above all others.
He is faithful to walk you through this process. I am walking through this process with you and I would love to be praying for you and I would love to share the journey with you. Feel free to leave a comment or prayer request. If you are more comfortable please feel free to email me through the website.
I am looking forward to continuing on this journey with you. I pray God speaks to our hearts clearly and personally today.