Sometimes I catch myself in the middle of doing something, and wanting to take a picture. I tell myself it’s to capture the moment. An image of a moment frozen forever in time so to speak. In all reality, I have to ask myself…is that why I’m taking this picture? Or, is it to post on Social Media to show others? Is this for ME to remember or for THEM to approve of me? Sadly, since I no longer scrapbook or use photo albums, the answer is typically the latter.
We are living in a time where we share EVERYTHING on social media. We are told that’s how we stay “connected” in this day and age.
I’m sure there’s some truth to that. With myself being a Military Spouse and living overseas from our family, we tend to use Social Media as a way to share our life with our family back home. Even my husbands 90 year old grandmother follows us on Social Media and enjoys seeing our life from afar. It can be a really useful tool!
But, when is it too much?
Where do we find that balance between sharing what we are doing in life for the purpose of connection and when does it cross that line into seeking approval?
We all want to feel significant. We all want that feeling of approval and acceptance. Our media (magazines, tv, internet, social media) all create this desire to do certain things, dress a certain way, listen to a certain type of music…and it’s not good enough to just DO these things. We have to post about it all.
Ever stop to wonder why we post it?
We are brainwashed to think earning “likes” or “wow” type comments will make us feel better about ourselves. It’s the only way to “fit in” or be liked.
We are born with this desire to be people pleasers.
But, this is where the problem lies. It’s when we start doing things or posting things for the “attention” or the approval of others is when we need to check our heart.
It can be so tempting to let the opinions of others become more important than they should be. We will never feel fully accepted by our peers no matter how hard we try. There will always be someone who dresses better, meal plans and exercises more regularly, travels more, parents their kids better, volunteers more…seeking their “likes” or their approval is only setting ourselves up for failure and disappointment.
I’ve learned, the only one I should be seeking approval from is God. HE already accepts me and loves me for who I am! He’s like that friend who can stop by unannounced when your house is a mess and you’re in your pj’s for the 2nd straight day in a row and it doesn’t phase you. You know they won’t judge you. They know you are awesome anyway. I don’t need to prove myself or earn their approval.
God is like this. He sees us on our “messy hair don’t care” days and loves us all the same.
So, why do we try so hard to get the approval of others?
When we are living our life to honor God, the approval of others becomes less important. Isn’t that a relief? Imagine being able to sincerely live your life not caring what other people think of you? I’ve noticed, as my faith grows, this desire to have people approve of me gets less and less. It’s freeing in a way! I’m able to “do me” and just enjoy it!
I don’t know about you. But, I will be checking my heart before posting to Social Media from now on. I’ll ask myself. Is this for ME or for THEM?
I want to be an encouragement to others…not someone seeking the approval of others.
How about you? Did this hit close to home with you like it did for me?
In what areas do you catch yourself comparing yourself to others or feeling you fall short of their expectations? Are they obtainable expectations? Or, would just living a God-honoring life help lower the need for their approval?
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