I get the message of grace, I think.
I don’t have to earn God’s love, His approval, salvation from His anger at my sin, future life with him…all those almost unimaginable good gifts. When God woke me up to my true condition and offered me the way of salvation and created in me the mind and desire to WANT to repent and accept His offer, all that and more were mine….forever.
I know I have HIS stamp of ‘it’s finished’ on me…why do I crave the approval and satisfaction of other humans?
Seeking that approval translates into meeting the expectations of others.
Most of these I invent myself - I project. For instance:
- a colleague showcases a very clever class project finale on You Tube. It’s applauded by the administration and I translate that as an expectation that I will be as creative in my classes.
- I read about other foreign language teachers whose students are so enthralled with what goes on in class, that they don’t even know they are acquiring language.
- a Christian wife mentions her and her husband’s ministry in their neighborhood and how they invite people over for dinner regularly, to share the gospel and serve.
- close friends host ‘grandparent camp’ each summer at their house and gather the cousins for a week of fun and life lessons.
All these expectations weigh me down. There are a host of others too. They belong to that category of even more personal than I care to mention. Things like…… what I imagine a ‘good wife, daughter-in-law, mother-in-law, teacher, neighbor, colleague, did I say teacher?, Christian, friend’ should do.
So how do I orient my thinking, renew my mind PRACTICALLY so that I can truly say: It’s enough that God is for me, that I have HIS love and provision, that nothing will block His good and perfect future for me?
That for me is the struggle of applying God’s grace to my life. How can I accept as enough and all-satisfying that HIS grace is sufficient when I seem to crave and think I should have the expressed approval of others? Is it even reasonable to expect, to feel it’s worth striving for, that it is even POSSIBLE to win/earn the approval of those very important, somewhat important and tangentially important because I see them every day?
How have you sorted this out?