When craving approval has you chasing your tail

Column Post by Aj Luck

We have a Golden Retriever named Carson. Occasionally Carson will glimpse something out of the corner of his eye and get all excited. It’s moving and must be caught, and the chase for his tail is on! Round and round he twirls in a feverish effort to catch it. Fearing it might get away from him, he playfully growls and twirls faster. He grabs the end in gleeful victory continuing to spin, tail in mouth.

When I was a little girl my favorite phrase was “HEY look at me!!” I wanted attention.

I made the silly faces, said the silly words just so my mom would say, “Good job honey.” I wanted her approval.

As the years went by I stopped saying the phrase out loud, but my actions still carried the same motive: Look at me. Accept me. Approve of me.

I wanted friendship so I looked for it everywhere I could. Some accepted. Many rejected.

I wanted to find love. Being unsure of who I was I fell in love quickly. Not realizing what unhealthy looked like, I found myself in an abusive relationship. Locked in by fear and addiction, I was too afraid to stand up for myself. I worried if did, I would no longer “be lovable.”

I didn’t know how to be alone.

I went from relationship to relationship in hopes of finding out who I truly was. I needed to be needed, whatever the cost. I had a relationship with Jesus, but I refused to think that He would help me. I had made way too many mistakes for Him to cover. I had to fix me—on my own. THEN I could go back to God to get His approval, after I was all put back together.

I watched Carson the other night, spinning in a desperate effort to chase what he had all along. That is when I remembered this verse from Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in your mother’s womb, I knew you, loved you and approved of you.” (AMP)

God may not have approved of my behavior, but He never left me. He wasn’t punishing me. He was standing right beside me. The approval I spent YEARS seeking, chasing and spinning around after was something that was right there with me the entire time.

In this world it is very easy to get caught up in trying to seek the approval of others to make you feel as if you have value. People will NEVER be able to satisfy this need within us. Only the one who created us can.

It is ONLY GOD who can truly show you who you are. Let HIM define you. Not people, and not your past. You do not need to seek out anyone else’s approval. God has already approved of you long before you ever felt the need to seek it out.

Oh, friend, why chase after something you’ve always had?

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P.S. We’d love to know your thoughts, so please be sure to comment below. Each of our commenters will be entered in a drawing for our current FREE book giveaway, Mothers & Daughters: Mending a Strained Relationship by author Teena Stewart. 

Aj Luck is an author, blogger, bookworm, wife, and mommy. She loves to write children’s books, spiritual thrillers and inspirational works. She has a dedicated blog geared toward encouraging and helping women who have suffered and/or are struggling with abuse. www.shatteredperspectives.com

In her spare time Aj can be found nursing cold Diet Cokes and searching for awesome bargains in nearby thrift stores. She resides in Florida with her hubby, son, two dogs and the biggest diva of a Siamese cat ever. You can email her at aj@shatteredperspectives.com

Read more encouraging stories from brave-hearted women here. Be sure to grab your free copy of inspirational quotes and writing prompts while you’re there. (Look over on the right hand side!)

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