Desire for Approval

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Wife - Odds - Midst - Vacation - Vacation

My wife at I were at odds. We were in the midst of the worst vacation ever. Curiously, the previous worst vacation ever was at the exact same location, so I suggested that the place was cursed and we should leave as soon as possible. We stayed and gradually worked through the conflict, but its intensity left me wanting to hear just a bit more from the Lord. I was hoping that the week would remain the worst vacation ever and never be supplanted by another.

The “more from the Lord” came about a month later. I have been divesting myself of books over the past two years, aiming to get rid of about one a day. Since some of them are old friends, I usually take a final peek. In one book I noticed the phrase “desire for approval” in men. I don’t even know if the book suggested that this was dangerous or merely normal. But the phrase changed me in a moment—and made immediate sense of what had been happening inside of me during that conflict from a month ago. The desire for approval, which can also go by the desire for respect, is certainly natural to us. We all want it. But, this time, the phrase revealed a shadowland in which my desires had imperceptibly morphed into desires that have nothing of heaven in them at all. My desire became need, and need became demand. I should have seen it when my hurt from sensing my...
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