Lovin’ the Limelight

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Dear Mentor,


I care too much about what other people think about me. I soar when I am complimented and despair when I am critiqued. I want to point people to Jesus, but often find myself taking the glory for myself first. What’s the key?


                                         Signed, Grade-A People-Pleaser





Dear Grade-A People Pleaser,


People have been self-centered since the beginning of time. The Apostle Peter struggled with this (Galatians 2:11-13) and the Paul must have too (Galatians 1:10). Even Jesus was well aware of this fleshly part of His soul that could lead Him down self-centeredness (John 2:24-25).


In today’s world, it’s not just what people say to you face to face. You can feed approval addiction with social media as well. How much time do you spend thinking about:


  • How many people re-pinned your pinterest posts? 
  • How many “likes” you got on an instagram pic? 
  • How many comments you had on a status update?


So what can you do?


Start a prayerful fast.


If indeed you are struggling with an addiction, you may need to go on a fast in some area of your life. Food is only one type of fast. In the same way that “it is not good to eat much honey; nor it it glory to search out one’s own glory” (Proverbs 25:27).


I like the way Andrew Murray explains laying aside an addiction:


“Prayer is the one hand with which we grasp the invisible; fasting, the other, with which we let loose and cast away the visible.” 


Remove yourself from self-exalting situations.


Jesus didn’t depend upon the words of those around Him. In fact, He says specifically that “I do not receive glory from men” (John 5:41). Sometimes, Jesus had to deliberately leave situations designed to glorify His manhood rather than His Father (John 5:13; John 6:15; Matthew 14:22).


You see, He knew that staying around for man-made honor would have weakened His faith-lifeline with God (John 5:44). His whole Life had to be one of faith in order to please His Father (2 Corinthians 5:7; Hebrews 11:6).


Aligning yourself with men (or women) just proves a fleshly viewpoint (1 Corinthians 3:3-4). And anything fleshly profits nothing because it’s the opposite of the Spirit-driven action faith (John 6:63).


“And whatever is not from faith is sin” (Romans 14:23). Yikes.


Bring your attitude into the light.


If you truly desire your actions to be God-like, step into His Light and come clean with Him. “He who practices the Truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God” (John 3:21). Not only is God light, but everything that becomes visible is light as well (1 John 1:5; Ephesians 5:13).


It’s also helpful to confess your weakness to someone else. You’ve already done this part by confessing it to me. I’m now responsible for praying for you and holding you accountable (James 5:16).


I love you.


                                     Grace and peace, Your Mentor