Nov 16 2011

Free From The Need of Approval

Free From The Need of Approval by K-LOVE Radio

A Prayer about the “Approval Suck” in All of Us

     We speak as those approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts. You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed—God is our witness. We were not looking for praise from people, not from you or anyone else. 1 Thess. 2:4–6

     Lord Jesus, I don’t know of a more persistent struggle in life than the issue of how we think about the approval or disapproval of people. You made us for intimate, rich relationships—beginning with you, and then with one another. But sin has infiltrated and broken, diseased and reoriented our relational bearings. It’s encouraging and convicting to see how Paul named and dealt with this issue in this letter to his friends.  

     As I look at my relational brokenness and sin, I can see how “people pleasing” plays out in two directions. On one hand, there are people to whom I attach my umbilical cord (metaphorically speaking) hoping they can give me life and fill me up—which, of course, no person can. On the other hand, there are people whose umbilical cords I grab and plug into me, assuming the role of life giver—which is equally impossible and glaringly arrogant. I grieve both of these patterns.

     It’s wrong—it’s idolatrous to give anybody the power to make us through their affirmation, or destroy us by their rejection. We’ll never know, love and serve people in healthy ways if our need for affirmation, or fear of rejection, is at the core of our relationships.

     Since, like Paul, you’ve “entrusted the gospel” to us, we take these matters very seriously. Because the gospel is true, we can freely confess the depths of our brokenness and helplessness. Because the gospel is powerful, we have great hope for change.

     Jesus, by your great and sufficient grace, shrink and disable our inner “approval suck.” By the power of the Holy Spirit, grant us greater assurance that, in you, we already have God’s full acceptance and everlasting approval. By the power of the Holy Spirit, grant us greater freedom from living as posers, pretenders, and performers.  By the power of the Holy Spirit, grant us greater joy in loving and serving others—even as you love and serve us. So very Amen we pray, in the beauty and bounty of your name.

Scotty Smith

Pastor for Preaching

Christ Community Church



Have the conversation one on one.

Express concern giving specific examples of behaviors you have personally .witnessed which led to your concern.

Even if more people are concerned keep to your own observations.

If many people are concerned have sequential one on one conversations.

Your Friend does not need to “Admit” to having an eating disorder.

Leave behind resources from local treatment professionals or facilities.

Refer to an ED Specialist, physician and registered dietitian.

Talk in a loving and supportive way.

Listen with a nonjudgmental ear.

Tell the person you are concerned, you care, and you would like to help.

Your Friend may deny that s/he has a problem. If s/he refuses to get help, tell someone else about your concerns.

Hang in there! It won't be easy.


Don't gossip about him/her to others.

Don't try to solve his/her problems or help with the eating disorder on your own.

Don't talk about weight, food, calories, or appearance. Concern about weight loss may be interpreted as a compliment, & comments about weight gain may be seen as criticism.

Don't expect to be the perfect friend - Reach out for support when you need it.

Don't try to force or encourage your friend to eat.

Don't expect your friend to be "cured" after treatment. Recovery can be a long process.

Don't keep this a secret for your friend. Remember, his/her life may be in danger.

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Comments (8) -

11/16/2011 4:29:50 PM
Beth United States
I have an eating disorder, I classify myself as a 'Compulsive Eater.' I have been in a recovery program for food addiction for over 14 years. Some professionals classify an addiction as a disease, and it's a physical, emotional and spiritual disease. It's not about who I am as a person, but a disease that I have. There is no 'cure', but a daily reprive when I depend on Jesus Christ to help me in all areas of my life. I need to take specific actions that are determinded by certain steps. I would encourage anybody who has a eating disorder to participate in a Celebrate Recovery program, or a 12-step program that addresses food addiction.
Only God can fill the hole in my soul that I tried to fill with food. I'm grateful for the peace I feel today and the freedom I have from food addiction,one day at a time.
11/16/2011 4:46:44 PM
Rose United States
I have read a good book called Approval Addiction.
Really good info!
What is a challenge for me sometimes is learning how wonderful it is to be a PLEASING PERSON and ease back from the tendency to people please!
After reading lots of books on lots of subjects including the one above, trying not to get too educated with the "learning" so that I can still enjoy being the pleasing person I love to be!
I hate to hear on the radio about the criticism you mentioned of some of my favorite artists!? I love Mandisa!
11/16/2011 7:43:48 PM
Jill United States
I am 27 years old and have been battling with anorexia and bulimia for over 15 years. I have been to several treatment centers and in/out of the hospital but can't seem to break away from the powerful grip of this disease. It's almost like a love/hate relationship. It's getting harder and harder to believe that recovery is possible. I know that God had and maybe still has a much better plan for my life and I feel guilty for all the time I wasted. I've been told by my doctor that I am going to die if things don't change, but for some reason that doesn't register with me. I have been living this way for so long I just don't know if I can ever turn it around. I should be finding happiness and peace in something other than watching the numbers on the scale go down. It never seems to be enough. Is there a bottom to this struggle?
11/16/2011 10:31:07 PM
Maxsteel O'Garvey United States
Maxsteel O'Garvey
11/17/2011 7:45:01 AM
Alisa Shanks United States
Alisa Shanks
Freedom from Eating Disorders is possible. As a psychologist and eating disorders specialist I have worked with people who are new to the struggle and clients who have struggled for 20 years. I believe that with excellent care from a treatment team including a therapist, nutritionist and physician who all specialize in eating disorder treatment, over time, with faith in Christ and supportive relationships, healing and freedom can be achieved. I know that eating disorders can feel like they define you and that you cannot live without them, but that is the deception of the struggle.  Breaking through the deception is key to recovery. We are not defined by our size and shape, but by the men and women God created us to be. There is hope. God bless!
11/17/2011 8:03:36 AM
Betty United States
Thank you so much for sharing this. All my life I have struggled with rejection and the need for approval, and time and time again it seems like I am just rejected. My mother passed away a week after birth, my father never felt the need to meet me or have anything to do with me. My grandmother raised my siblings and I and she passed away when I was 10. I have a cousin who is a huge blessing who did not reject us, but raised my sister and I and to this day is a true blessing. I was in a relationship for 21 years, married 17 of those and my husband continually rejected me by lying,being addicted to porn and being verbally and emotionally abusive. I got vitiligo at the age of 23 and it has continually progressed, it is now over 50% of my body. I was also diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003 at 32 yrs old(same age my mother passed away. I had to have a double masectomy,chemo,and radiation. I lost all my hair plus had all these white spots on my body(vitiligo which spread even more)and that was so difficult.  I praise our precious savior Jesus Christ for his wonderful miracle of healing me of cancer and allowing me to live for my children so that history wouldn't repeat itself. I will always be grateful to him, but nonetheless, I struggle with all the scars on my body and hate taking any pictures which I would love to take with my kids. This last year my husband transferred jobs and cheated on me(and now I know it was not the first time) and like that was not bad enough, he continued to be verbally abusive calling my body butchered and messed(to put it nicely) ,stating no one would be able stand me with my messed up body, and wishing that cancer had killed me. We are in the middle of a very bitter and painful divorce, and  to make it worse,he has even abandoned our children and all his responsibilities to his family for his selfish acts. I already struggled with my body issues, but now he has made it worse and because I see how people stare at the vitiligo all over my body, I tend to believe that I will never know true love or have approval. I was feeling this way when I was driving home and heard you(Eric) reading this letter and I just felt God touch me and speak to me as he has so many times before and tell me that I need to just focus on the great miracle he did so that my kids and I can be together and I can watch them grow and take care of them especially now through this divorce. I know that God has a greater plan for me and that nothing is impossible with him, but sometimes the world really gets you down and all the judgements of poeple can seem overwhelming so thank you for doing the work of the Lord and allowing him to speak through you. As I go through these daily struggles of people staring, looking down on me, rejecting me, I know I must remember that everyone has scars, mine just happen to show and it is much better than those with internal scars of selfishness, bitterness, a cold heart, no conscience, and just plain miserable(like my soon to be ex husband).  My children and I are very blessed because 'If God is for us, who can be against us'.  Thank You for this topic!
11/18/2011 10:10:45 AM
Jeannette United States
On Wednesday I was driving home from work and caught some of the converstation on approval and rejection.  I have been legally separated from by husband of 39 years for a year.  I discovered that he was having an affair and this was the beginning of the end of our marriage as we knew it.  I guess there was a glimmer of hope that we could eventually reconcile but that hasn't happened and doesn't look like it will. I have found that the hardest feelings that I have been struggling with was my feelings of rejection.  In fact I have wallowed in it.  Then I heard these words
"It’s wrong—it’s idolatrous to give anybody the power to make us through their affirmation, or destroy us by their rejection."  I realized that I was allowing my husband to destroy me through his rejection. Suddenly a peace came over me and I knew that instead of giving my husband this power, I would work to please God.  Thank you so much for sharing this with me.  I went on your website to read the entire article and benefit from the message. God bless you.  KLove helps me get through the day and constantly reminds me of God's love.
11/19/2011 11:41:22 AM
Pearl Barman United States
Pearl Barman
Scott and Kelli, A friend of mine bought me the book Jesus calling. It has truly helped me through some very difficult days.  When you read it on my way home from work, I can go to it when I get home and reread it and just to know that God knows exactly what we need and when we need it. I am so thankful that God is using the two of you to let us hear what we need to hear. I am truly blessed to have found klove a few years ago and have never turned my radio to any other station. Thank you for all you do for everyone. When they were discussing on the radio the other day about letting your light shine, I can tell you that meant so much to me and to hear God just talk to me and telling me I have let people take over my life for so long now its time to let my light shine. When I got into my car after working the same song was playing I knew right then God was letting me know that he is there through everystep of the way. This has made a great impact on my life and it will continue. I have a very difficult task to do and that is writing letters to confront the 2 men that violated my child hood and has taken so much of my life away cause of the feelings I have held for so long.  I know now is the time to finally get healing and to let God take complete control and guide me through this process. Thanks Klove for always being there. You are a true healer and just wonderful people. God Bless
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