Have you ever wondered why you do what you do? Have you ever wondered why someone else does what they do? Here’s why. We all are missing three things in our lives and, we do what we do, to find them. What are we missing? First, we don’t feel significant so some of us do what we do to try to find significance. For others, we don’t feel safe and we do what we do to feel safe. Lastly, many of us don’t feel accepted and we do what we do to feel loved by others. Here is the big problem. We were created to find those things in God but we try to find those things from this world and from people.
If someone is looking for feelings of significance, they can become ego driven. They must find significance in how they perform. If you live with this person, this is what you experience. They constantly compare themselves to others. So, they can be hard on themselves to perform because they must be better than everyone else. And, they tend to feel jealous of others and it leads them to be very critical in life. In general, a man struggle.
If someone is looking for feelings of safety, they normally feel insecure about today and tomorrow. They desperately want safety and comfort. If you feel insecure, what do you do to create security in your life? You try to control everyone. Living with this person means they will manipulate and nag others until they get what they want. And if that doesn’t work, they normally have a bomb waiting for you. It’s called, guilt. They will become the victim in life, no one understands, and they leave you with one option. Do it my way or feel guilt. In general, a woman struggle.
If someone is looking for feelings of being accepted, they tend to be people pleasures and willing to change who they are so others will like them. If a son is looking for the acceptance of a father, he can be an overachiever desperately waiting for dad to say, “I’m proud of you.” If a high school person doesn’t want to feel rejected, they break under peer pressure to be liked by others. If an adult wants people to like them, they will care more about what people think than what God thinks. This is probably the most common in churches. It’s considered Holy to be nice and all along, you are a wreck because you are a people pleaser.
The other extreme of looking for acceptance is when this person rejects others before they are rejected. This explains why people are so mean.
Why do we do what we do? Because we are looking for feelings of significance, feelings of safety or feelings being loved by others.
What has been the result of our lives when we go looking for these feelings outside of God? It devastates us. It leaves us with seven dominating emotions. Inferior. Insecure. Inadequate. Guilty. Worry. Doubt. Fear.
Scripture says, 15 Don’t love the world’s ways. Don’t love the world’s goods. Love of the world squeezes out love for the Father. 16 Practically everything that goes on in the world – wanting your own way, wanting everything for yourself, wanting to appear important – has nothing to do with the Father. It just isolates you from him. MSG 1 John 2:15-16
Our pursuit of these feelings from this world and other people, isolates us from God. Because are isolated from God, those seven emotions dominate us.
What does it look like when we look for those things in God? 22 What happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard – things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, 23 not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. MSGGalatians 5:22-23
We were created to find significance, safety and acceptance in God.
Let me ask you; do you see your need of God in your life? Do you see that you don’t have it in you to live in freedom? Do you see that in all your pursuit to find feelings of significance, feelings of safety and feeling of being accepted outside of God ended in a train wreck? Do you see your need of God in your life?
If you don’t see your need of God, you won’t experience a relationship with God. Church won’t make sense to you. Church people will seem weak to you. Or, if you are religious, you will just keep following rules and never be honest about the true condition of your heart. The struggle you will have is simple. You won’t live in freedom from those seven emotions. Over time, they will wear you down.
If you do see your need of God, I want to share a verse with you and talk about it.
5 Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. 6 If your sinful nature controls your mind, there is death. But if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace. 7 For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will. 8 That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God…. 11b And just as he raised Christ from the dead, he will give life to your mortal body by this same Spirit living within you. Romans 8:5-8, 11b
Did you see that part that says, …if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace… ? How do we get that?
- Realize, that the only answer to your struggle in life is the Jesus. That means every practical problem we have… the solution begins with Jesus.
- Realize, that every attempt we make to find feelings of significance, safety and acceptance apart from God is death. I mean that: death.
- Realize, that to have the Holy Spirit control your mind, it requires you to make a choice to die to every sinful and selfish thing within you and spend time with God.
The proof is simple: you have life and you can give life to others. You also have peace.
Real quick, three things you can do to screw it all up.
- Ignore God. Fill your life with business so that you can’t engage the Bible. Pray as little as possible.
- When given the choice to do what you feel vs doing what God wants, always do the easy thing.
- Be religious and fake that you are healthy. Follow as many rules as you can. Never be transparent with the true condition of your heart. Continue to try to find significance, safety and acceptance from this world and other people.
Guaranteed to ruin you. Life will be overwhelming and over time, the wheels will come off the wagon.
Listen, please. We are in deep need of God.