People Pleaser

I am a people pleaser. I desperately want to be liked. Over the years, I have compromised in ways I am ashamed of simply to avoid conflict. I have kept my mouth shut when I should have spoken, and I have spoken when I should have stayed silent, all in an effort to make those around me like me.

Worse, though, than any of that, is that my desire to please people can often take precedence over my desire to please God. Some of the those compromises I talked about? They were made when I refused to really live out parts of the Bible that might make others not like me. Parts that make people uncomfortable. But as I study God’s word, I see over and over again that believers were very often hated. Most of the prophets of the Old Testament were giving incredibly unpopular messages. The disciples were mistreated. Jesus, himself, told his followers that they should expect persecution – expect to be hated.

I don’t like that. I don’t like when people dislike me, disagree with me, think I’m terrible, narrow-minded, wrong.

But God reminds me through Paul’s words in Galatians, “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

I have to choose – I can be a people pleaser OR a God pleaser.

I know the right choice. And I also know when I focus on being a God pleaser I am far more at peace. I can let go of my worries about what others think about me, what others say about me, what others write about me. I can take comfort in the fact that my Creator, my Savior loves me. He is with me, guiding and directing and teaching me. In fact, if I am totally honest, I draw closest to him during those times when I am disliked by others. I am driven to God in my weakness.

I don’t know if I will ever completely be free from my people-pleasing tendencies. But I can work daily to choose Christ over people, to let go of my selfishness (because, ultimately, that is the root of my people-pleasing attitude), to be completely obedient to the One who tells me He has plans for me, good for me, works for me to accomplish for Him.


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