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the only voice I hear…

I think this is for me…but I’m gonna blog it…just in case this might be for you too.

As of late–I feel as if there have been a lot of voices coming my way. And–being a people pleaser (by the way–you can go HERE to read through the 21 Steps to recovery from your people pleasing problems if you are as bad as me on this!)…I just have something within me that wants to make sure everyone is happy and saying NO isn’t in my vocabulary (although I’m working on that–and I’m getting better at it…”Just Say No” is what Rico Suave repeats in our home;). And low and behold–don’t make me even describe what happens within me–when I realize I may have disappointed someone! I can even see how I struggle with this even with my own CHILDREN. Yes, it’s true! I can’t stand it when I think I may have disappointed a CHILD even!!! And maybe–that is even harder for me!!! (But isn’t this a good thing for our children to learn??!! Because *I* will disappoint them!)

Tonight, I was praying through this. Cause momma has A LOT on her plate right now–and my top priority through it all is my personal walk with the Lord and my sweet family. THIS is my first calling. All others–fall into place after. Wiphan, Created for Care, emails from strangers, emails from friends, phone calls throughout the day…daily compete for my time–which with 4 little ones and homeschooling is just so limited–and I have to listen to Him on how I need to spend almost each and ever moment. So many of you–your plates are full too. And a full plate + people pleasing personality can often = disaster…or the very least a very overwhelmed spirit.

It’s good to daily–DAILY–remember the order of our callings.

What is your first calling?

Who is it to??

Does your daily life reflect and show evidence of that?? If not, what are some things you could change to regroup?

Some times it’s hard to hear His voice among all the noise on our full plates…yet when we SLOW down to hear His voice–the people pleasing problems all of the sudden…start to fade away…and it’s His voice we can then hear. It is not man I want to please, but my Savior. And as long as you are in this world there will be LOTS and LOTS of things and people that appear good, but if they keep you from your first focus…time to regroup…an maybe push a few peas or even a much bigger helping off your plate. My problem is this–I often say yes and then have to push off the plate instead of listening to Him in the beginning and saying to the server “Oh that looks DELISH–I’m going to pass this time, but I might try that next time if it’s served again!”

Hard to often do…yes easier said that done–but who do I want to please?

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galations 1:10

Because I’m serving God and not man–man will not always approve or love the way I do things. And…DEEP BREATH…COME ON ANDREA…YOU CAN SAY IT;). AND…that is okay. Really, I’m okay with that.

One of my favorite devotionals of all time is “The Imitation of Christ” by Thomas Kempis. It was written in the 1400s–and it’s simply food for my soul. In reading his chapter Spiritual Life these are some things that stuck out to me…

What’s the most profound, and yet the most practical, lesson you can learn? That you look like an ant! What’s the deepest wisdom and yet the highest perfection? That you ARE an ant! Have no illusions about yourself–that’s what Paul laid upon the Romans (11:20). Hold high opinions only about others.

Now…that little tidbit might not mean much to you–but marinate on it a bit.

Compared to the greatness of my God…I’m an ant–probably much less actually.

In this BIG, HUGE world–problems that come my way…really, if I’m ant size–aren’t they also ant-size?

Can’t I trust HIM to take care of them??

And when it comes to others–who am *I* to form opinions or judge or do anything other than SIMPLY LOVE?!!??

Just love.

And because we are human–and our flesh…can be yucky–let’s remember that we are ants–and ANTS–well, they really aren’t that great. In fact, they bug the stew out of me some times. And I bet I bug the stew out of some people some times too. Humbling to think about. And thinking about that sure makes me want to just SIMPLY LOVE. Now, I might update my blog and post pretty pictures–but really–I’m no different than you. Well, actually…I probably mess up more than you…have a messier house than you…feel like I’m gonna lose it more than you…and often feel a whole lot more tired that you. I just don’t always blog about the messes, the losing it or the tired. Momma likes to focus on the “high lights” as she processes her day;) Hold high opinions only about others.

I love what he said again in this chapter here…

Endless lectures, pointless tomes, majuscule, minuscule, my poor head splits, and yet all I want and desire is You. Learned doctors may giggle, dumb creatures may gaggle, and yet in all the babel Yours is the only voice I hear.

First–lemme say if you read that and thought I’m smart…think again people;) Thomas Kempis wrote this book (not me), and he wrote it in the 1400s. And I hadn’t a clue what tomes, majuscule or minuscule were or how to properly use those in sentences until I looked them up, but I can read between the lines and get his point. (By the way–for those of who stink at vocabulary like me–I looked those up so we could have a little educational moment…:) [tomes – a large book, especially one volume of a multi-volume scholarly work; majuscule – one of the large alphabetic characters used as the first letter in writing or printing proper names and sometimes for emphasis; minuscule – tiny].

Okay–now I have to share it again now that I’m learned;) I feel like I’m homeschooling:) Only–you probably knew what those words meant already!

Endless lectures, pointless tomes, majuscule, minuscule, my poor head splits, and yet all I want and desire is You. Learned doctors may giggle, dumb creatures may gaggle, and yet in all the babel Yours is the only voice I hear.

Ever feel like that? There’s things coming at you in ALL directions. You are living day by day…because each day right now in your life REALLY does have enough of it’s own. Lots of things going on. Lots of un-done on your to-do list. Opinions. Advice. Chatter. And some days like your head might split?!



AND…His voice is enough. It is the only voice I need to hear.




And through the babel–who will I choose to please?

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galations 1:10

Everything we do won’t make sense to the world–and others may often even get frustrated when we aren’t on their time table or when we can’t do it all or when we say no or when our people pleasing nature slowly fades away. Often, I think we make life so much more complicated than it really should be.

Life truly isn’t that complicated…although we often make it that. It truly should be simple. Shouldn’t it be that way for an ant??? Just wanted to encourage many of you who feel the pressures of this world–and to encourage you to consistently evaluate your full-plates…entrusting each thing on them to the Lord–and listening for His voice among the noise of this world. Take some time this weekend to really listen.

Not sure about you–but this little ant is excited about spending her weekend with her family, friends and cheering for 2 of her little ants at their soccer games tomorrow. I’ll leave y’all with this song that ministered to me tonight in a refreshing way….I was singing it and just quiet…and listening…for His voice…

Mama Mimi - September 10, 2011 - 12:11 am

Wow – THANK YOU for this post. It is JUST what my heart needed to hear tonight. I’m feeling so completely overwhelmed with day-to-day life and struggling to do devotions and find time for just me…and then I have people with requests. Requests I want to help with, but I think I need to take care of my family first. And figure out what normal is in all this change.

…and…you probably didn’t need all that either =) But it feels good to get out! Blessings to you friend!

Allison - September 10, 2011 - 1:00 am

Good stuff! Thanks for sharing your heart. I have “been there, done that” and it’s totally okay to say “no” and let whoever you have to say it to deal with their feelings about it. It’s their feelings, you are not responsible for them, you are responsible for yourself and your own choices, responses and reactions. Learned that from “Boundaries…” I am also currently re-reading Lysa Terkeurst’s book “Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl” which is awesome and right along the same line with what you wrote here.

Christy - September 10, 2011 - 7:16 am

Oh girl, this hit home with me too. I am also a people pleaser, and just yesterday as God showed me something to give up that was only good for a season and that season is over, I worried about what someone would think about me leaving. Also, I sat here this morning trying to get everything ready for my daughter’s princess party and to do a neat little talk to the little girls with visuals helping them see the ways God shows us that we are His princesses, I was reminded to slow down and digest these verses for myself. What a relational God we serve who hears us and speaks to us when we are willing to listen! Have a great weekend, my friend!

Jen - September 10, 2011 - 9:32 am

Another people pleaser checking in, Andrea! It’s so hard to turn that tendency off, but I believe God is doing that through our adoption. We are taking the “road less traveled” in our circle of influence and so many don’t understand why. When it comes to my kids, their opinions and suggestions are not important, especially the negative ones, LOL! Thanks for the reminder to inject this to other areas of my life as well:)

Brandi - September 10, 2011 - 12:08 pm

As a new bride my aunt gave me a book by Donna Otto, I read it and thought it was good but it didn’t really apply yet. Fastforward 17 years and the pages are falling out of said book. I too am a people pleaser. My dear friend/mentor calls it “a servants heart” either way I have trouble saying no!! The golden nugget from that book I’ve learned is . . . only I can be my hubby’s wife, only I can be my kiddo’s mom and only I can be my heavenly Father’s daughter. All those other things I’m asked to do, and struggle saying no to, CAN be done by someone else. Thank you for your words! I needed to read them and be reminded. Have a blessed weekend with your family. : ]

Brandi - September 10, 2011 - 12:09 pm

*ps as I listened to the song my hubby and kiddos one by one wandered in and we were all singing. It’s going to be a great weekend!!!

Alison - September 10, 2011 - 12:42 pm

Thanks for this reminder, Andrea! I am always working on seeking God’s voice for the things I should say yes or no to. I have a history of being a “yes” person to everything, and then being way too busy. Thankfully, God is changing me and showing me how to invest my time in the things of Him…the things that truly matter!

Kym - September 10, 2011 - 1:51 pm

Yep, I’m one of those “yes” gals too. I have to admit, with having 3 little ones in less than 4 years and then a husband spending 15 months in Afghanistan, I had to learn to say “no”. And worse, I had to actually ASK for HELP from others, gasp! It was hard, but God taught me a valuable lesson through it all. Once I stared “Yes” to the best things and “no” to some good things, I reaped the benefits of it and then it became easier to say “no”. I even watched as someone else was asked to do what I said “no” to, and see how they flourished because it was right for them, and not for me. SO, just take baby steps and listen to Rico Suave and “just say no”!

Staci - September 10, 2011 - 4:22 pm

Another especially good post! Thanks for sharing your heart and God’s faithful transforming work within it!

Kelly - September 10, 2011 - 9:58 pm

Thank you for challenging us to evaluate where our priorities are! I learned long ago to “use the 14th and 15th letters of the alphabet” from our wise pastor! And, I also learned to be “jealous FOR” things at a Beth Moore conference one time! Jealous for my marriage, my family, my ministry! 🙂 It is GOOD for you to do this!!! And, if you need help planning the next C4C…let me know! !)