Give up your people pleasing ways: remembering your true boss

Give up your people pleasing ways: remembering your true boss

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I had walked into trouble and didn’t have the confidence to handle it right. My people pleasing ways were always causing me to let someone down, especially myself.

My assignment was to take a group of nurses out to eat to get their feedback for a marketing project. When I arrived, I asked if they were ready to go, but as a new nurse went to retrieve her purse, another nurse told her she wasn’t included. I opened my mouth to say that each of them was invited, but the other nurse in a rush of words reinforced what she said. The young nurse mumbled it was okay and fled. In my confusion, I saw the doctor appear and just as quickly disappear.

The whole tone of the luncheon was tarnished for me. It was my first job out of college, and I was still getting comfortable in my new role. I wanted to be liked, and I wanted to succeed. I thought I needed the popular vote to succeed, but this didn’t feel right.

While I hadn’t been there long myself, I already knew the bossy nurse was the doctor’s favorite. She could talk sweet unless you made a suggestion she didn’t like. No one challenged her. I made it through that assignment, but I regret my lack of backbone. I learned I needed advice on personnel issues, topics my boss would know.

Proverbs 29:25 is true. Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.

Since then, my relationship with the Lord has developed and strengthened. I know how the rejected nurse felt because I’ve been on that end. The fear of returning to the invisible, unpopular group has indeed been a snare I have worked hard to overcome with the Lord’s help.

Standing up for the persecuted and surviving the storms, growing in confidence and pouring out my sorrows and regrets to Jesus have been steps in a lifelong process. I want to be strong, but often I am weak. Even when I do stand up to a wrong, which I have continued to improve on, the rejection or angry response I receive still feels personal.

Remembering that each of us is a work in progress and that Jesus understands our hearts is encouraging. Colossians 3:23 reminds me to work as working for the Lord and not people. This helps me to remember that pleasing God is more important than pleasing people. It helps me think of Jesus as my true boss. Just as a boss at work can mentor a new employee, praying to Jesus for strength and answers will strengthen me to do the right thing.

Maybe you also fall into the devil’s snare of people pleasing. You can’t please everyone, but if you please Jesus, you’ll please the One who matters. Even if the world seems to spin out of control, we know God is working all things for His glory and our good so stand firm and trust. In Him, we are safe and loved. He is faithful.


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3 Replies to “Give up your people pleasing ways: remembering your true boss”

  1. Michelle, your posts are always meaningful to me in one way or another. When I was young, especially a teenager in high school, I was the one who was not wanted, or so I thought. I was never directly told that I was not wanted by anyone. It was more of a feeling. My dad was a hired hand on a large farm and he did not make much money. He also had six children, which prevented my mother from working an outside job, which was not excepted at that time anyway. But she could sew. So, I wore skirts and blouses made out of feed or flour sacks, was painfully skinny and shy, and had bad teeth (no money for a dentist). So, learning that Jesus accepted me, at age eleven, was truly a huge blessing for me.

    1. Donna, God has used you in amazing ways throughout your life. What others meant to bring you low have been used by God to lift you up. You were rich where it counted with your eyes fixed on the One who could help. I want to encourage you to write down your stories of your life because they are rich with lessons learned and of how life has changed. It was a blessing that your mom knew how to sew well. Thanks for sharing. I enjoy learning about your life.

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