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Approval and Disapproval

“Sometimes we are our own worst enemy. We are partially responsible for creating a problem that need not be. For example, we may encounter different life situations with the idea that it is a necessity to be loved or approved by significant people around us. If we don’t have this love or approval it is perceived as awful, terrible, the end of the world, and we respond with anxiety.” (Father George Morelli)

“Being in service to others, such as volunteering for charitable causes, can be a way of seeking other people’s approval and, in the process, making ourselves feel better…The need for love and approval can be a form of addiction and can even replace a fulfilling relationship with God.” (Abbot Tryphon)

“Those greatly misjudge their good deeds who think that human approval is a sufficient reward. Actually, when transitory praise is sought for a good deed, then what is worthy of an eternal reward is sold for a trifling price.” (Gregory the Great)

“It is all right when God sends us the approval of our fellow men; however, we must never make that approval a motive in our life…Seeking the approval of others always leads us away from what matters.” (A. B. Simpson, Joseph Stowell)

“Overcoming the dire need for approval can begin on two fronts. Psychologically one can re-structure their personal rule system from must or should to would like. Thus a more effective way of interacting with others would be to think: 'that it's definitely nice to have people [s love and approval---but even without it I can accept myself.' Spiritually, we can turn from worldly approval by affirming and living out the words of St. Isaac the Syrian: "There is hope [trust-confidence] in God that comes through the [commitment] of the heart which is good, and which one possesses with discernment and knowledge." The saint indicates that God is ever merciful, even in the face of our failings. Poetically he puts it this way: "As a grain of sand cannot counterbalance a great quantity of gold, so in comparison God's use of justice cannot counterbalance His mercy." (Father George Morelli)

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