Danger - don't please people! Please God.

And the fun continues! <she said with dripping sarcasm>

Chapters 3 and 4 - The Dangers of Being a People-Pleaser

* Inordinate people-pleasing brings you into bondage by enslaving you to everyone whom you desire to please.
- "Ironically, most of the time, they are unaware that they have such control over you. That's because it is you yourself who gives them this power."
- "The intense desire for man's praise and approbation puts them in bondage to man by tempting them to make decisions based on what others will think of them rather than on what God will think of them."

* The excessive love of praise takes from you the honor you so eagerly seek.
- "Those from whom you long to receive honor and those whom you desire to impress will eventually be offended (if not repulsed) by the pride that generates your lusts."
- "If seeing pride in others turns you off, don't you think others will be turned off to you when they perceive your pride? Pride is the sin out of which people-pleasing flows." (Desiring/loving the praise of others rather than pleasing God. Idolatry.)

* Immoderate people-pleasing causes you to lose eternal rewards.
Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven." Matthew 6:1
- "Whether or not you do so consciously, when your motives are to please man rather than God, you are longing not to be rewarded by your Father in heaven, but to be seen (and rewarded) by men."
- "The question to ask yourself is, "On whose stage am I performing, God's or man's?"

* The inordinate desire for approval blinds you to your own sin.

How lust for man's approval blinds you to sin.
- Pride tempts you to exaggerate your virtues.
- Pride tempts you to minimize your flaws.
- Pride tempts you to distort and magnify the seriousness of your flaws.
- Pride tempts you to change things in your life according to man's priorities rather than the agenda of the Holy Spirit.
- Pride focuses your attention on changing the outer man more than the inner man.
"The changes made by the approval addict are often external issues having little to do with character."
"Character is eternal." Train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. I Timothy 4:7,8
- An excessive love of praise tempts you to believe man's opinion of yourself over God's opinion.
How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? John 5:44

* The inordinate desire for approval makes you susceptible to flattery and renders you more vulnerable to deception and manipulation from others.
"Flattery makes the good about you seem better than it is, and the bad about you seem less than it is."
- "The people-pleaser delights to hear others embellish his character and minimize his weaknesses."
- "He seeks out these reports rather than looking in the mirror of God's Word."
- "The act of flattery is an act of deceit."
He who rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with the tongue. Proverbs 28:23

* Immoderate people-pleasing robs the approval-seeker of his peace and joy.
- "By seeking to please man rather than God, you set yourself up to be plagued by anxiety. Anxiety (or worry) will steal the peace and joy that are part of your birthright as a Christian. How much time do you spend thinking about how to avoid displeasing others?"
- "When you are overly concerned about displeasing others, you are worrying about what they will think of you or how they might reject you or how they might cause you grief in some other way. And worry is sin."
- "Worrying consumes an inordinate amount of time that could be better spent thinking about and doing those things that are eternally profitable."
- " Investing so much of your time, effort, and thought in trying to please people rather than God is truly an exasperating exercise in futility."

Hold on!
HOPE is just around the corner!
Weeding sin out of our lives is hard, painful work. But it has a reward!
Focus on this passage while the work continues.
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:1-3

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