I confess: I’m a people pleaser. This nasty little trait is hard to get rid of, but I know many of us share it.
I’ve always wanted to make people happy but I’m realizing that it’s not my job. Literally, you are not in control of any body’s happiness. As a matter of fact, no one’s happiness is your job at all. I find myself seeking to please those closest to me. You know, because I actually care about what they think about me, my decisions, and my life. I value their input and judgement. And, it’s nothing wrong with that.
As a child, I found acceptance in knowing I did something that made my mom proud. Like making honor roll and joining the youth choir at my church. Everything I did just seemed right in her eyes. However, when I started to mature, specifically, when I went to college, I started to make decisions on my own. The ones she didn’t necessarily agree with.
“Nee, what about your home church?” my mother asked after I told her I was going to join a different one.
“I’ll still come visit, you know, for holidays and stuff,” I reasoned with her.
“OK, Nee, what about the new church you’re going to?” my mother asked. After 20 minutes of me explaining the new community I joined and everything they stood for, my mother still had her nice-nasty feelings about my decision.
“Alright, I’ll come visit next week,” she responded, only in hopes of being nosey, I’m sure. I felt uneasy about that decision for, I don’t know, months after I joined. But, I then realized something. My mother’s happiness isn’t up to me. Sure, I want to make her happy and I want her to be proud of the woman I’m becoming but her happiness isn’t my job.
Seven years later my mother is still uneasy about my decision and I’m absolutely sure she will be uneasy about more decisions I make. But that doesn’t keep me from making any. No matter who it is: my mother, my significant other, my sisters, or my best friend– my job isn’t to please them. My decisions don’t rely on solely if people like them. Sure, I want people to like them, but I don’t care if they don’t. And, that doesn’t mean I run around doing whatever I want without any sound advice or counsel. But if I know deep down that this particular decision is something I have prayed about, consulted people on and gained information on then I’m going do it regardless of if anyone is happy about it. I don’t find acceptance in making people happy. I find acceptance in knowing I’ve done exactly what God calls me to do.
And, guess what? If I mess up or it ends badly then I have no one to blame. And if it doesn’t then there was nothing lost. I’m firm believer that everything, and I mean, everything, happens for a reason. A mess is all a part of God’s sovereignty.
You can’t live your life trying to make everybody happy. It’s unrealistic and exhausting. So, free yourself from people bondage.
What are you confessing this month? Share in the comment section. I’d love to hear about it.
Keep Being Honest,