Approval Addiction

For they loved the approval of men rather than the approval of  God. John 12:43 (NASB)

I just made the decision not to view the stats identifying the number of reader clicks on my blog. I’m no longer repeatedly checking in. I’ve stopped until God says to check. I have no idea if God will give me permission to check again in a week, month, year, or ever.

If you’re wondering why I needed to stop, I’ll tell you. When I look to others for my significance, approval, and validation, they become my source of security. Determining my value by the opinions of others is not only risky, it’s a train wreck waiting to happen. This mentality dooms me to living a life of addiction. One needed approval “fix” leads to another and another until my attempts to fill my insecurity with substitutes eventually consumes me.

Until I discover my identity and significance is in God, I literally worship the approval of others. Life as an approval addict breaks the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me.” (Exodus 20:3) There is no biblical support in allowing others to become our source of identity or security.

If God is the source of our life as stated in Genesis 2:7…”The Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being,”  then He is also the source of our identity and security. Since God further states, “to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved (meaning Jesus),” then the approval of others is a competitor, really a false god, that we allow to replace Christ’s acceptance.

As Sampson needed to kick the harlot out of his bed, even so, I need to kick this approval addiction harlot out of my mind and heart. As addictive behavior occurs little by little, day by day, until patterns become lifestyle habits, I’m beginning daily rehabilitation therapy. I don’t blindly believe that my deliverance will happen in a day, but today my first step in breaking free is refusing to check my number of reader clicks. I’ve decided that instead of working for the approval of others, I’m working for God and that my writing needs to stir from what He gives me and that’s what I’m giving back to Him. Readership needs to become an irrelevant factor in determining my value, significance, or success.

Realizing that no one’s cured in a day, it’s certain that I’ll be writing more about my rehabilitation therapy. Since addictions are commonly experienced by many, but few openly announce their addiction, anyone seeking to break their addiction is welcome to read along. Knowing someone else is pursuing freedom may make you feel less lonely on your freedom journey.

Just understand that, if you chose to travel with me on my blog, I won’t be checking in to see how many are traveling with me. Instead, I’ll be checking in daily with the One who when He breathed life into me, also breathed in my identity which is held secure and protected by His Son.

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6 Responses to “Approval Addiction”

  1. Rob Howe Says:

    Lorie, I love the truth you learned in this entry and the trust in God you are showing. as you walk with God each day, I will be there beside you.
    – Rob, your regular.

  2. Susan B Says:

    Your comments as a couple touched my heart. How very precious! You two are very dear. I so enjoy what the Lord is teaching all of us. The gentle hand of the Potter is molding and shaping us into the vessels that He desires. He will smooth out the mars of our insecurities. As He does, He makes use of the containers that we are. May He fill us with the sweetness of His Spirit so that we can be a blessing to others and grow in His Likeness. My cup runneth over as I see my sisters and brothers in the Lord being supple in our Creator’s capable Hands. How delightful!

  3. Lorie Says:

    Susan, Thanks your for your encouraging comments. Initially I questioned publically posting comments about my writing that Rob and I enchange. I then realized that these comments share a powerful message of the incredible support of a marriage partnership journey where God is the center. This realization led to my decision to go public with our comments.

  4. Connie Mace Says:

    Hello Lorie! We miss you up in this NCWA-neck of the woods.

    GOD has been working in my life about the same thing…obsession with stats was taking over, so I quit “cold turkey”… removed the “followers” widget from my personal blog and quit checking my stats. I have no idea (other than a comment) who “subscribes.”

    As “blogservant” now for NCWA, I don’t focus on their stats either.

    I’m writing for an audience of One. I pray anyone who reads it is blessed, but it’s a blessing not to know.

    • Lorie Says:

      Connie, thanks for your encouraging words. I’m glad that God’s loving grace is walking both of us into a journey of freedom. Together we are both discovering there’s no more secure place than God’s love and nothing more wonderful than making what we do an offering to Him.

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