Friday, August 17, 2012

Full Disclosure Friday: Seeking Approval

In keeping with the "Full Disclosure Friday" theme....

another transparent, honest post.

I believe in honesty...even when it leaves you vulnerable.

I'm frustrated.

Well, that is an understatement.  I guess perhaps if I'm "fully disclosing" I should admit that I'm furious. Hurt. Sick.

There, I've admitted it.

I'm struggling with an issue.  One that isn't pretty.  One that reveals a struggle within my fleshly side that shows just how far from perfection and godliness I am.  Sitting in my own sin.  Needing His grace.

I'm aggravated.

I am totally caught up in the fact that I continue to allow the opinions of others to taunt me, hurt me, drive me in the wrong direction.

I'm tired of it.  I do NOT want it to matter.  I don't want to care.  I want to hold on to the confidence I have in Christ.  I want to stand tall in the fact that I know He is leading my life and directing my paths.

Yet, unfortunately, I fail at letting that be enough.

I think too much about what others think.  I look too often to their approval and I get stuck in the pit of their disapproval.

Even though I know....

their opinion doesn't matter.  It never will.

But it does.

I hate it.

I hate that part of me.

I keep asking God to rip it out and redirect my attention to His face, His ways, and His filling of every gap in my heart.

Yet, here I sit.  Once again.  Hurting again.  Wondering what I have to do to be good enough.  Even though I know without a doubt that I am already good enough.  My life should speak for itself.  Christ lives in me.  No other quality or trait matters or compares.

Yet....I sit.  Waiting for approval.

Knowing their approval is the least of my worries.

But it sits as a priority in my heart.

Ugly.  Paralyzing.  Disgusting.

Disclosure admits that though I say it doesn't matter, it does.  "Their" words hurt.  "Their" actions hurt.  "Their"  inaction hurts worse.  "Their" bold approval of others and disregard of me (or my children, husband, or family) hurts.

I KNOW better than to take stock in "their" opinions.  After all, I often tell my kids to not worry what others think.  Their keeping a clean heart before God and giving Him their best is what matters.

That IS the truth.

Yet, the truth still hurts.

I keep wondering and asking God why things continue to be the way they are in a few situations.  I keep wondering when He will change the circumstances.  All I hear in response is:  trust and wait.

I'm not so good at the waiting part.

I constantly and vividly look for the lessons in trials.  I keep my heart open for what it is that He is teaching or asking of me when in the middle of struggles.

Impatiently.  Waiting.  Desperately. Seeking.  Not giving up.  Not giving in.

I don't need the applause and approval of certain individuals to know that I'm doing something right.  Yet, being transparent, don't we all seek it on some level?  Doesn't it sting when it doesn't come.

The real question I'm trying to learn to answer is:  what now?

Do I wallow in self-pity?  Do I rage at the injustice of situations?  Do I act in defiance and lash out?  Do I let those hurtful situations justify poor behavior in response?

Unfortunately I have to admit I'm guilty of all of them at some point or another.  Not something to be proud of.

I typically try to let it drive me to improve, do more, succeed harder.  Though I realize that is a wrong response as well.  Nothing wrong with improving, but the attitude of my heart in these situations isn't as pure in nature as it should be.

Instead, the desire of my heart is for God to rip all of those negative responses out and fill me with His love, His grace, and His heart.

Thank goodness I'm a work in process.  Thank goodness He doesn't demand perfection.

He seems to be giving me LOTS of practice will dealing with these "negative" emotions lately.  I just pray that I learn VERY quickly to respond more in His way and less of mine SOON.  I sure hope I learn what He is trying to teach me quickly.

Mold me.  Teach me.  Fill me.

He's using that chisel on me and it's quite painful at times.  I want to rush through the process and get to the final result immediately.  Yet, I know I have to go through the process.  Each painful chipping away of the "ugly" one tap at a time.  Ouch.

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