Chariots or “Likes”?

A friend of mine has 52,216 followers on Twitter.  Another has 36,333.

Last time I looked, I had 42 :).

That doesn’t bother me, but this on another friend’s blog…

Hmmm… Deep breath.

There are days when I’m humming along, feeling pretty good, and then, even accidentally sometimes, I’ll see a number, and I turn small and envious, and discontent.

I’m embarrassed to admit this, but am I the only one?  Which numbers affect your sense of well-being?    Number of dates you’ve had in the last year?  The number on your scale?  Number of days since your kids called?  Number of sales? Number of friends on Facebook?

So Monday I read, “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.”  Ps. 20:7

I don’t know about you, but there aren’t many horses or chariots in my neighborhood, so it is not a temptation for me to trust that Charlton Heston is going to come careening down my street, whip in hand, vanquishing all my foes, cleaning up all my insecurities.

But there IS the temptation to trust in other things.

I’m wondering…if this verse were written today (no, I’m not changing scripture, just wondering) might it read:

“Some trust in ‘followers’,  ‘likes’, ‘hits’, ‘friends’ and full email boxes, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.”

But here’s a hard question.  What does that look like?  Trusting in God?  And not being derailed by either praise or the lack of it?

How do I resist having praise go straight to my head and criticism straight to my heart?

A couple of years ago I learned about a “Welcoming Prayer”, originated by Mary Mrozowski, that I have adapted and personalized for my own use most mornings.  Maybe part of trusting God is reminding ourselves and preparing for the battle we face each day.

Here’s my version of the Welcoming Prayer, prayed with hands open upwards:

Holy Spirit,  Welcome.

I let go of my need for affirmation and approval…

I let go of my need for recognition from…(This is the most important part for me. I insert here, specific people or places I’m tempted to look to for approval)

Holy Spirit, Welcome.

I let go of my need for power and control…

I let go of my need to change…(I insert here, specific people or situations I’m tempted to try to control)

Holy Spirit, Welcome.

Find rest my soul, in God alone.
For my hope comes from Him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
He is my fortress; I will not be shaken.
My salvation and my honor depend on God;
He is my mighty rock, my refuge. Psalm 62:5-7

Lord, help me to be a follower instead of seeking followers.  You are enough.

Which derails you most often? Praise or the lack of it?

8 thoughts on “Chariots or “Likes”?

  1. Great truths here, Laura. I have many, many times, in similar contexts with folks feeling bad, recalled John’s sermon on “Audience of One”. So great! And he was not shy in sharing that it was your rebuke to him…………..that led him to teach us. Wisdom. Love it. Thanks for a great start to the day.


  2. Yes! Comparison is such a killer. I wrote about it yesterday, too.

    I have great respect for a teacher who once told me that one of the most dangerous parts of teaching can be the audience. He said it is tempting to think that the “best” talks are the ones when the most people come to talk to you afterwards. But that’s not always true. There probably won’t be many “thank yous” or “that was so great” about sermons on getting rid of greed, anger, etc. in your life. But sometimes what people want to hear is different than what they need to hear.

    I think the blogosphere can be especially lonely and dangerous because of this. At a church, many teachers have some sort of team that can be their affirmation. “The audience may not have liked it, but we believe that is the word of God for our body right now.” Out in cyberspace, we don’t have that. So reaching for “likes” can be an even greater temptation.

    I love the verse you chose to reinforce this idea. It is a constant battle to trust in the Lord instead of our chariots.

    P.S. I only have 26 Twitter followers, so you are at least ahead of me 😉


  3. I just realized that after I read your posts I turn to the window and completely lose track of time while I stare and reflect! You always seem to hit the things I’m struggling with…how do you KNOW???? 🙂
    So glad you introduced the Welcome Prayer. I have a LOT of opportunities to use it – starting in about 2 minutes. This also makes me present to the kids and teens in today’s world. It seems like it’s becoming such a competitive place for them with so many social pressures. The journey will look very different for those that choose to stay grounded in God alone. I pray that through Him, our faith communities will continue to lead kids to follow Christ instead of seeking followers.


  4. 42 people who love reading your posts. Keep up the great words of wisdom, I love reading your thoughts, sometimes they are exactly my thoughts. TGIF. Blessings, Moxo in Canada


  5. I wanna be all noble and say that the number of ANYTHING is not important to me… but it is.

    I’ve got to remind myself that I’m liked and loved … even when people don’t push those buttons on my blog.

    Oh, by the way, I followed you on Twitter…. you’re up by 1! 😉


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