I struggle with compliments. Sometimes I discount them and sometimes I’m defined by them.
If someone admires my earrings, I tell them how old they are.
If they like my outfit I make sure they know it’s off the clearance rack.
It’s frustrating not knowing how to receive a compliment. I’m often quick to diffuse a kind word out of embarrassment, instead of replying with a simple thank you.
Yet, there’s another side to flattery. There are times I let it define me. Neither approach is wise.
I heard some good advice. Give every compliment you receive back to God. Make it an offering of thanks to Him.
Back in April I was asked to speak at a ladies conference. The women were extremely responsive to the message God laid on my heart. Their comments elevating my self-esteem. As I drove away, I felt pretty good about myself.
Thankfully, the Holy Spirit brought that advice to mind. Give all those compliments back to God. Lay them at His feet as a sacrifice of praise. He deserved all the glory. Not me. I couldn’t have done it without Him. I was a mere instrument in His hand.
How easily it is to revel in the accolades of others. To desire their approval. To find our identity in what we do and how others perceive us. We often live by the kudos of other people. God help us!
The Bible says we are tested by the praise we receive. (Proverbs 27:21). We must guard against pride and be wary of flattery. We humble ourselves when we recognize the Source of all the good in our lives. And that’s our Creator.
If there are no comments on my blog page, I get discouraged and feel like quitting. Wondering who cares what I write about anyway? But when I get positive feedback, the passion is ignited. Neither should be my motivation for writing.
I didn’t start my blog for the accolades of others (though I love those comments, people). I do it because I’m compelled to encourage. To point my readers to God’s Word. To share personal experiences that help others to identify with suffering and trials. To write down the thoughts God puts on my heart.
A recent entry in my personal journal reveals my passion for creating Kingdom Mom. These prayers come from Proverbs 10 and 25.
“May my written words be a fountain of life to those who read them.
May my words be like silver knowing what is fitting for the moment.
May my words nourish many and bring forth the wisdom of God for daily living.”
My flesh longs for admiration, pampering, and acceptance. God longs for the glory. So what do you do with a compliment?
Push it away by diffusing it. Pull it in to define you? Or give it back to God who is worthy of all praise?
Encouragement is for our mutual benefit. Just make sure all praise goes to the Father who richly provides everything we need for life. Did you ever think He knows when we need a compliment? He does! So thank Him for it when it comes.
What do you do with a compliment?