Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The People Addiction

 “I don’t care what people think about me!” Have you ever said something similar to that? As easy as it is to make that statement, it’s harder to actually believe it and live it out. Everyone wants to feel accepted. Everyone desires to be loved. When we don’t receive the love or acceptance we long for, we become addicted to people. It doesn’t matter if you’re the world’s greatest basketball player or on the cover of "World’s Most Beautiful Magazine," rejection is something that comes to every person. Although we all experience rejection, we don’t all handle it the same. Let’s take a look at how Hannah, a woman of God in the book of First Samuel, dealt with rejection and received treatment for her people-addiction.

The Symptoms:
Insecurity & Depression
You know that you’re a PEOPLE-ADDICT when you begin putting your worth in people instead of God. When our worth is in people, we care more about what people think and say about us than we care about what God has said about us. If you believe that you’re a failure because your father said that you’ll never amount to anything, you’re addicted. Instead believe that the Lord has great plans for you, to give you a future filled with hope (Jeremiah 29:11). If you see yourself as ugly because someone said that to you, you’re addicted. See yourself as fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). If you’re afraid to be yourself because you fear that people might not like the real YOU, you’re addicted. Instead, be content with who you are (Matthew 5:5). You’re an addict when you crave for the affection and attention of others more than you crave His attention and affection.

Hannah was married to a man named Elkanah. Now Elkanah was also married to a woman, Peninnah who easily bore him children. However, it was not so easy for Hannah to bare children. “So Peninnah would taunt Hannah and make fun of her because the Lord had kept her from having children” (1 Samuel 1:6 NLT). Immediately, Hannah felt the rejection and slipped into depression, “Year after year it was the same—Peninnah would taunt Hannah as they went to the Tabernacle. Each time, Hannah would be reduced to tears and would not even eat” (1 Samuel 1:7 NLT). 

When our worth isn’t in God alone, depression and insecurity will always be the outcome.

We see a few verses after, Hannah rose up from her depression and went to the Lord. As she was at the temple, she began to cry out to God. She vowed that if He would give her a son, she would give him back to God. She prayed so intently and diligently that even Eli, the priest, thought she was drunk. “'Oh no, sir!' she replied. 'I haven’t been drinking wine or anything stronger. But I am very discouraged, and I was pouring out my heart to the Lord'” (1 Samuel 1:15 NLT).

Worship is THE treatment for people-addiction.

So how does the story end? In that same chapter of First Samuel, Hannah gave birth to a son, Samuel. She honored her vow and gave him to God. We know that Samuel became one of the most well known prophets in the Old Testament. He even anointed King David of Israel. Out of the lineage of David, came the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords—Jesus Christ. What if Hannah didn’t cry out to God for a son after her experience with rejection? There would be no Samuel. Without Samuel, there would be no David. Without David, there would be no Jesus. 

There is a blessing in rejection.

Every day, God heals me more and more from this addiction because I too, am an addict at times. Before treatment with the Holy Spirit, if someone didn't validate my beauty or the gifts inside of me, I would feel insecure. I came to the realization that my depression was rooted from people. Like Hannah, I valued other people's opinions more than God's. So, I took the very painful rejection of my past to the Lord and I began to build a lifestyle of worship. I allowed Him to use my rejection for His glory. Out of that came this blog. Now, each day I pray that I only desire the acceptance, affection, adoration, attention, and love of my Lord.

Beloved, take the rejection in your life to God. I know it’s hard, but let it go. People are going to reject you—THAT’S LIFE! But it’s how you deal with the rejection that makes the difference. Hannah took her rejection to the Lord and He made it into something so unbelievably great. Ask the Holy Spirit daily, "Am I allowing rejection to depress me and cause me to feel insecure?" Right now, go to the Lord and fall at His feet. Pour your heart and soul out to Him. He wants to take your rejection and turn it into acceptance for someone else. It’s time to get over this addiction to people. Begin to put your worth in Christ. Take the dosage of worship prescribed by the Holy Spirit. He wants to heal you and infect you with His love.

"Lord, the rejection I've experienced has hurt me. But I will no longer handle it without You. Today, allow me to desire Your attention and Your affection more than anyone and anything else. You are all that I need. God, heal me. I am ready."