The Orchard Blog

Approval Addiction by orchardblog
March 2, 2005, 9:15 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Lately I have been pondering the arena of “approval addiction.” I think our society is plagued by it, and in many ways it seeps into the church community (abroad). I think we try to appear smarter, better looking, and even more spiritual than we really are. We become masters of the art of impression management.

Many of us live in this cage or bondage to what others think. I would suggest that it takes many forms:

  • we find ourselves getting crushed by what others say about us
  • we habitually compare ourselves with others
  • we live with a nagging sense that we aren’t important enough or good looking enough

Henri Nouwen says it best when he said, “‘To whom do I belong? To God or to the world?’ Many of my daily preoccupations suggest that I belong more to the world than to God. A little criticism makes me angry, and a little rejection makes me depressed. A little praise raises my spirits, and little success excites me…Often I am like a small boat on the ocean, completely at the mercy of its waves.”

The alternative to this “approval addiction” is freedom IN CHRIST.

Lewis Smedes sums it up by saying, “One of the fine arts of gracious living is the art of living freely with our critics. When we have the grace to be free in the presence of those who judge our lives and evaluate our actions, we have Christian freedom.”

Just out of curiosity, what have you struggled with as it pertains to “approval addiction”? (You DON’T have to put your name…just to create a good discussion leave it anonymous.)


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