We are born not knowing how people operate…how they react…how they love or don’t–we are but a blank slate when it comes to understanding how the people of this planet conduct themselves.
We learn–trial and error–as we go along. We pick up behaviors, habits…crutches (idols). Crutches become a way of life–automatic–so deeply ingrained that we don’t even realize we’re using them. Crutches may be one of the following: control, anger, people pleasing, lying, cheating, overeating, under-eating, or name your poison.My crutch was people pleasing. It had been my constant companion for so many years that I couldn’t remember not using it. I didn’t (and still don’t) like to have anyone anger or upset with me, therefore, I would try to keep peace at all cost. My crutch became so much a part of me, I didn’t even recognize I was using it.
However when it became obvious I was clunking around on a crutch I felt powerless to say no. I became frustrated, angry, weary, and bitter. I longed to rid myself of people pleasing, but I couldn’t or wouldn’t stop–the consequences were far to scary.
I was chained to the approval of man. I was not walking in freedom. The Lord had delivered me–saved me from my sins–but I like the Israelites was not walking in faith. The Lord had delivered the Israelites from Pharaoh, they had seen the ten plagues and how the Lord had spared them, yet they still did not walk in freedom. When things began to look dim they wanted to return back to Egypt to slavery. And when Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians marched after them. So they were very afraid, and the children of Israel cried out to the Lord. Then they said to Moses, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying, ‘Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians: For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.” Exodus 14:10-12.
The Israelites were delivered, yet they wanted to return to the chains of slavery. They were delivered, but they were not walking in freedom. They wanted to return to the chains they had just been rescued from. Why?
We know the feel of our chains–we’ve worn them for a long while–and even though they may not be pleasant they are familiar. We fear what the unknown may hold so we revert back to the familiar. Our chains may be unpleasant, repulsive, and must assuredly unhealthy but they are familiar therefore we return to them.
Isn’t it time we throw of the chains of people pleasing and walk in freedom? Christ gave His life so that we might be free.
In the fall of 2012 the Lord decided it was time I walked in freedom. He brought me to my knees and showed me it was He I was called to please, not man. I won’t tell you I’m not tempted at times to pick those chains back up, but the Lord has been faithful to help me walk in freedom.