"Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the LORD means safety." [Proverbs 29:25]
I feel so motivated to write on this topic mainly because this has been something the Lord has been working on me with. For the majority of my life, I've always cared about what people thought of me, their opinions, their approval, was I good enough in there eyes, etc., etc., etc. I guess you can say I had a case of approval addiction. I believe this began when I was younger when I dealt with low self esteem and insecurity, so naturally I was always seeking approval...always seeking for someone to tell me and think I was "okay", I wasn't living for God, I was living for people...people were my God and what they thought determined how my day would go and how I would feel about myself. This was bondage, there is never any freedom when you live for people. Only God liberates and God had to bring this issue to my attention, and He always does it followed by a test.
For example, God had to bring me to different situations where I had a choice to make, to choose people or choose Him. When God presented this weakness to me, he spoke to my heart, I begin to realize that I could not become the woman God wanted me to be while serving both Him and people, it's absolutely impossible...I can not serve two masters. Matthew 6:24 tells us "No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.". [I encourage you to replace money with anything or anyone you have been idolizing or know you have put before God.]
In this particular situation, I wanted to please this person, but something was done that made me feel very uncomfortable. I had a choice to stay in this situation to please this person and their feelings, despite feeling uncomfortable or step out of the situation into a place where I knew God wanted me to be. Well, I chose option B, and it was hard, but it was worth it because the peace that came was simply beautiful and it taught me how to break free from people and their opinions. Don't get me wrong, I love people, but people are not my God and I refuse to live for opinions that can't save, redeem, or protect me.
The Truth about Idols...
When we have idols and live for people, we make emotional and irrational decisions based on their opinions, we do things we normally would not, our joy and circumstances depend on this specific person, and that is no way to live. This is not God's will. People will change, people are only humans, imperfect individuals like you and me, it is absolutely never a good thing to place all your hope, faith, decisions, etc. on a human being, place, addiction, or thing. It is however, absolutely wise to place your hope, faith, decisions, life into God because He never changes...He is the same yesterday, today, and forevermore. You don't have to worry about God changing His mind or His word because He doesn't make mistakes, His love never changes and He is forever constant. It is risky living for people, but an absolute sure win and victory when you live for God.
You may be struggling to be free from people, but just don't know how to break free, there's only one person who has the keys to unlock those chains and His name is Jesus. Ask God to show you who and what has taken priority or god in your life, He will reveal those things/people to you, and when He does ask Him to deliver you and help you be free from those idols. When the tests come (and they will), they may be challenging, but through the One who is able so will you be able to overcome and be delivered from people.
Do You Know Who You Are?
In the area of confidence and knowing who you are, I dare you to find out who you are in Christ. That's what I had to do, I had to learn that we are a delight in God's eyes, our worth exceeds any fancy jewels or gems, He sings songs over us, and He loves us with an unfailing love so great the grains of sands on all the beaches in the world can not equate to. We must be some very special valuable people in His eyes, I pray you live your life through the eyes and mind of Christ knowing who you are in Christ.
Living for Christ, Not People...
Overall, what people think of you, it is none of your business. Whether they love you or hate you, it does not matter, they can't stop the love that God has for you, and they can't stop the great plans God has in store for you! Be you...it's time to live for Christ...LIVE FOR CHRIST. His approval is all you need, and beloved He already approves of you and thinks you're to die for...literally. Love Him, love on yourself, be the virtuous woman and strong man of God the Lord has called you to be, and BE FREE.
I encourage you to find out more about who you are in Christ because that is where our confidence should come from, not this world, but from the source our Creator.