Monthly Archives: October 2014

Breaking Approval Addiction

Do you live under a burden of guilt and condemnation, feeling unrighteous, unworthy, and insecure? Are you a people-pleaser, always looking for the approval of others?

If the answer to any of these is yes, then God wants to help you move beyond those feelings, Why? Because they not only affect your personal relationships, but also your prayer life and your ability to be promoted. And I can tell you from personal experience, they certainly steal your joy and your peace—and that is not God’s will for you or anyone else.

I believe there are two states that can cause us to desire the approval of people: being emotionally wounded and being caught in a pit of self-pity.

Wounds that won’t heal

Because I grew up in an environment of sexual and verbal abuse, I thought I was wounded beyond healing. Worse, I projected the personality of my earthly father onto God and was sure that, like my father, God was impossible to please.

If you have been hurt and wounded by people who were difficult to please, you may think God is the same way. He isn’t! It is not as difficult to please God as we may think. Simple, childlike faith pleases Him. He already knows we will not behave perfectly all the time. That is why He sent Jesus to pay for our failures and mistakes.

God has no problem with the knowledge of what we lack; we are the ones who have problems with it. We often find it difficult to admit to ourselves or anyone else that we are anything less than perfect.

Remember, God is not surprised by your inabilities, your imperfections, or your faults. He has always known everything about you and He chose you on purpose for Himself.

Once we understand how God sees us through Christ, we can refrain from being oversensitive to what people think about us, and feeling bad about ourselves. We don’t have to be addicted to their approval, because we already have God’s approval!

Self-pity: The Self-curse

When we’re living to try to please others, we see our weaknesses as “curses.” They’re the things in our lives that we just can’t do anything about and will surely be our downfall in the end. It’s easy to see how this way of thinking can turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The cure for this is simple: Give God not only what you are but especially give Him what you are not. It is easy to offer Him our strengths, but we should also offer Him our weaknesses because His strength is made perfect in our weaknesses.

The Apostle Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “’My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” Don’t hold anything back; give God everything!

For years, I struggled with guilt and condemnation…and feeling like I had to “pay” for my sins by feeling bad about myself. If it was a “little” sin, I might feel bad for a few days. But if I really blew it, it would send me on a two-week guilt trip.

During one of these particularly bad episodes, the Lord spoke to my heart and asked, “Joyce, do you believe the blood of my Son Jesus paid the price for your sins?” I said, “Yes, I do.” He replied, “Well, if you plan on receiving this forgiveness two weeks from now, why don’t you just receive it now and begin enjoying your life again?”

I learned that feeling guilty over my weaknesses doesn’t accomplish one single thing! I don’t believe I have to add my guilt to His sacrifice. His sacrifice was complete and perfect, and no work of my flesh can improve on what He has done.

Source:
joycemeyer.org

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A Sense of Place

PIGSPITTLE OHIO

I love maps.  Topographical, road, flight maps, ancient there-be-dragon maps and modern maps with ever-changing borders.  An elementary school assignment — I can’t remember what grade — involved writing a log for a trip around the world.  You could start and end wherever you wanted.  I remember visiting Barcelona, Athens, Istanbul, Cairo, Delhi, Tokyo, Perth, the Easter Islands, trekking high into the Andes, then to Rio, Mexico City, the Grand Canyon, way up to the Hudson Bay, and then landing back in my hometown in suburban Columbus, Ohio.  I avoided the USSR.  It was the late ’60s but it was before détente. I can still say that it was my all-time favorite school assignment ever.

ohio_ref_2001For all my love of the earth “graphies” — topography, geography, cartography — I struggle with defining a sense of place where I live today.  Pigspittle, Ohio, isn’t on a map.  It is a nickname for a real place that…

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Misogyny: Every Little Bit Matters

The Melissaverse

I have been forced, through sheer volume of Twitter exposure, to learn what #Gamergate is.

I’m not a gamer. Never have been. I have no reason to take any interest at all in the internal politics of the gaming community. But there’s this stupid hashtag peppering my Twitter feed, compelling me to find out what the hell it means.

Well, sort of. I know what some of its proponents say it means and I know what basically all of its opponents say it means. To be frank, I don’t care how it started (actually, given that the term was coined by Adam Baldwin, I’m actively bummed to know how it started) or whether the original accusation of bias has any merit (seems like it doesn’t, but I’m not going to do enough research to be able to speak with any authority on that). Here’s what I care about: Gamergate…

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Blessings

God wants to take you to levels higher than you’ve ever been before.

When you begin to understand the levels of favor, opportunity, influence, promotion, health and creativity God has for you, you’ll never be the same.

Obstacles won’t intimidate you. Naysayers won’t discourage you. Limitations won’t hold you back.

No matter what the circumstances around you look like, I want you to get this down in your spirit today…

God wants to bless you in every area of your life! You aren’t called to barely get by. You weren’t created to struggle through each day, barely paying bills, frustrated at work, unhappy at home.

As a child of Almighty God, you are a joint-heir with Christ Jesus. Every good and perfect gift from the Father is available to you.

Success is your birthright!

That means that every setback is temporary. Every roadblock is artificial. Every limitation can be overcome.

I want to encourage you that we serve a God who strategically orders our steps. He is not random — He is precise and accurate.

God has already laid out His good plan for your life… down to the smallest detail.

Just as God will strategically use good breaks, promotions and the right people, God can also use adversities, disappointments and closed doors to move you toward your destiny. It might seem difficult right now, but if you’ll keep moving forward, one day you will see how God can use it for your ultimate success.

You may never know why you’re going through a challenging time, but you can come back to this core truth that God knows what He is doing. His plan for your life is better than you can imagine.

God is bringing you to a place of
unprecedented success.

Make this declaration a part of your daily life:

I am blessed for success. I am in it to win it. I will not let what somebody said about me, this rejection, this breakup, this closed door, this disappointment, or this sickness cause me to get sour. God strategically placed me here. I will succeed because God is for me, and He will provide everything I need.

Source:

joelosteen.com

Thirty-something

My journey, from wine lover to sober and happy...

It was my birthday a couple of days ago; thirty-nine, the final one of my thirties. The decade began with a party at my old house; a little terraced two up, two down, that I bought upon the end of my short-lived marriage. My thirtieth birthday bash was a fancy dress do, the theme being ‘1970s debauchery’. At the start of the evening there was a power cut and my then six-year-old daughter shone a torch on my face in a blackened bedroom as I applied my make-up and set in place a sleek, bright pink wig. An hour later, fairy lights twinkled in celebration of the electricity supply returning, the music grew louder and the booze began to flow. By midnight I was lying in my bed, a bucket strategically positioned adjacent to my head to capture a seemingly never-ending stream of vomit as my guests continued to party…

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Diplomatic Baggage

NAKED DIPLOMAT

In 1949 the Vice Marshall of the Diplomatic Corps advised new British diplomats that they “should always take the option that is more pompous and old fashioned”. He might have been right then, though somehow I doubt it. He is certainly wrong now. 

At a moment of rapid transformation of other trades, ours retains customs first constructed around the diplomatic encounters of the Renaissance. Here are seven changes that would make us leaner and more competitive in the digital century. 

1. Junk the jargon. I’ve written before about meaningless diplatitudes such as “discussion of regional issues” or “matters of mutual concern”. Diplomats talk about “being unable to remain indifferent” to human rights violations – a phrase that drips indifference. There are ambassadors who could write of a mugging that “he took all my possessions, but the atmospherics were warm”. Just sometimes there is a place for obfuscation. But we should replace the jargon with more…

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