Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galations1:10
This weekend I spoke at a women's retreat for my home church. Being vulnerable at a speaking engagement is easy when you know you never have to see the ladies again. But being vulnerable before your home church is a little bit harder. These are the ladies who you'll see again and again, who you want to love and respect you. Yet, I knew God was calling me to be share my story, warts and all.
I shared with them my struggles with perfectionism, and being "good enough" but failing. I told them of the grace God showers on me and my failures; grace that I often cannot give to myself.
The retreat could not have gone better, in my opinion. Because I knew I was being obedient to God in sharing my story, I felt confident! (or more accurately God-fident!) After the retreat, I handed out surveys to get feedback from the ladies. Later today, I plan on going through them.
I want to know what the ladies felt, if they feel it went as well as I did. I want the helpful critiques of ways I can improve. However, I also want to maintain my "God-fidence." I know that I walked in faith and did what God wanted. The fact that I felt no anxiety (the first time ever in my speaking) when I should have been filled with anxiety (because it was my home church) showed me that God was there.
Feedback is important to improve my speaking. And already I saw a very helpful critique as I collected the forms. I want to honor those who were brave enough to "speak the truth in love.*" But regardless of the critiques I receive, I want to rest in the God-fidence that I was obedient, and God is pleased. It's a balance, and for me sometimes a hard one. Seeking approval from God alone, when I so desperately want the world to tell me I am "good enough."
So before I look at the feedback forms, I want to make sure that I will not be crushed by criticism, or filled by approval, but simply look to improve my craft of speaking.
God already redeemed me. I don't need feedback forms to do it.
Reflection Question: Are you looking for worldly approval or God's? How do you balance accepting the "truth spoken in love*" but still maintaining your worth as a child of God?