By now, you've probably picked up that I just love people! And because there's a flip side to every coin, that can be both a good and bad thing. You're astute enough to know the good reasons; among the bad reasons is the fact I put way too much stock in what people think of me. I feel like I fly by the seat of my pants in friendships because I'm always acting on assumptions of how I'm making the people feel.
Which brings me to the point: I don't give the most dependable, trustworthy people in my life enough credit, because it's so difficult for me to trust.
It may appall you to know that I receive compliments with more skepticism than I care to admit. Over the years, I've lived in fear that people are merely covering over their dislike for me--a dislike that will come back to bite me later.
Do they think I'm being a bad friend? Will she be mad at me because we didn't go to coffee this week? Should I have talked on the phone with her an hour longer? These questions constantly run through my head, so even when sincere love is staring me in the face, I often don't recognize it as such.
I have more encouraging people in my life than I ever could've hoped for. It's frustrating when I find myself doubting, even spurning, my friends' uplifting remarks because I'd rather disbelieve them now than be disenchanted later when I find out they don't like me that much after all. All this because my distrust springs from somewhere deeper: I don't trust the Lord when he says that I am lovable and worth loving.
"Perfect love casts out fear." Every day, I am more sanctified in this, like everything else, than I was yesterday. I look forward to seeing my relationships mutually flourish on a foundation of unity and fellowship instead of fear.
P.S. How is it that there are no "fear" or "trust" tags in my tag cloud at this point? That thing is getting humongous! There has to be some overlap here! Until then, I'll just keep throwing in new words...