WE HAVE BEEN APPROVED BY GOD.
1 THESSALONIANS 2:4 NRS
Living in the approval of God frees you! It frees you from being addicted to approval; worrying what other people think of you. When you’re an addict, no matter how much of your drug of choice you get it’s never enough. And like all junkies, you go crazy when your drug is withheld. ‘Approval Addicts’ are always at the mercy of other people’s opinions. As a result they feel like they are on an emotional roller coaster of highs and lows. The Apostle Paul was free to speak the truth in love: to confront people, or be gentle with them. If someone didn’t like Paul or agree with what he said, he didn’t let it get to him. That’s because his life wasn’t built upon their approval. ‘We have been approved by God.’ Paul didn’t go around needing to: a) compare himself with others b) show off to prove himself c) impress or compete with others d) be the big boss. Living in God’s approval set him free from anxiety, and meant he could enjoy the life God called him to live. When you’re young and insecure you tend to worry about what others think of you. But as you get older, you start to realise that most of the time people weren’t thinking nasty things about you at all. They were too busy worrying about what you thought of them! Living in God’s approval frees us from all that stress. It gives us the strength to deal with criticism and conflict, because we know our identity. And our identity is this: we are God’s accepted children. And since we are accepted and approved by Him, what else matters?