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Lies: I need everyone’s approval
Pastor Mark Jeske
by Pastor Mark Jeske
June 16, 2021

To some degree everybody needs to be liked. Mainly that’s a good thing. Friends can make our lives a lot better—they can bring encouragement, insights, comfort, smackdown when needed, and a sense of belonging. In his time of suffering, grieving the loss of family members, livestock, and health, Job ached for some compassion and support from his friends. But he got none: “Have pity on me, my friends, have pity, for the hand of God has struck me. . . . Will you never get enough of my flesh?” (Job 19:21,22). Understandable.

But you can overdo the need for other people’s approval. It’s a false dream to think that you need everyone to like you—it’s a lie. Not possible. Some people may resent you because they covet your gifts or blessings. Some may be so caught up in their own struggle that they have no energy left for you. Some may be so insecure and needy that they interpret any resources flowing toward you as just that much less flowing toward them. Some pretend to like you just to see what they can get out of it.

If your emotional well-being is dependent on pleasing everybody, you will be miserable all the time. Get your priorities straight: Serve God first. His Word will inform you how to do that. Serve your family and take care of their needs as best you can. Take care of your job obligations and care for your own mental and physical health. 

When you get those priorities straight, there will be friends enough.