At the heart of pleasing others is the need to be necessary. At the heart of the need to be necessary is the desire to be loved. No amount of pleasing or needing can take the place of love. Believe me, I’ve spent a lifetime learning that painful lesson. If others need me, then I’ll be loved. If I please others, they will need and eventually love me. Small wonder my heart is in the shape its in.
Pleasing leads to lust, and lust leads to hate if allowed to run its course. It is a natural progression seen over and over in life. I eventually come to hate that which I had to have. I’m thankful God lets me learn the hard lessons of pleasing and being pleased on my own. If He didn’t, I imagine the hate would be directed at Him. Like a spoiled and ungrateful child, I would blame Him when I didn’t get what I wanted.
I found myself throwing stuffed animals this afternoon after a particularly trying day. The girls were tired and fussy, and so was I. I was hurt, and I did what all spoiled children do when they are hurt. I lashed out, and I felt pretty silly afterward. I’m glad no one witnessed my fit and that Mickey Mouse and the Pink Panther can’t talk. Lillyann asked me later, while we were watching Dr. McStuffin, if I thought it would be fun if toys really did come to life.
I told her that they might be upset by the way we treated them. She gave me a questioning look, and I explained that we lose, break, or sometimes don’t bother to play with toys, and they would probably tell us to play with them more or be careful with them. She didn’t see me throw the stuffed animals, so I think she must have thought I was referring to her treatment of her toys. I could tell she was thinking about it, and so was I.
Toys and people need love. That was the point of the Dr. McStuffin episode we were watching when Tyler came down to join us. The girls made a bee line for him and smothered him with kisses and hugs. He enjoyed the attention and agreed that nothing made him feel better. I felt the same way as I was getting the girls to sleep. There’s nothing better than hugs from sleepy children. They love with abandon, and there’s nothing more healing.
Transitions are so hard, but I know they are necessary if I am to love as God desires. It’s not easy to make the steps necessary for the transformation God has in mind, but a friend shared a post from AARP Arizona that said, “Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tip toe if you must, but take the step.” That image was just what I needed to stop throwing stuffed animals and quietly tip toe in the right direction.
The lessons this week have been about being grateful, and it was humbling to realize how ungrateful I am when it comes to all God has given. I hope to be more mindful of His gifts, especially His Son’s precious love. I’m also thankful that Pink Panther can’t come to life because he’s almost as big as I am and might just toss me on that top bunk if he could!!