People-Pleasing: Where People-Pleasing Leads

Jeanne Takenaka


+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

I am honored to kick off a blog series with two writers I truly respect: Emily Conrad and Mary Geisen. Over the next six weeks, the three of us will take turns sharing on our series called— Chosen and Approved: Untangling Our Identities from People and Perfection. This series resonates with my heart—both because of what I’m learning about my identity and how insecurity affects it, and because I suspect others also struggle with knowing who they really are. It is my hope that this series will minister and speak life-giving truths to all who read the posts.


Frozen flower

If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know I’ve been a people-pleasing girl for most of my life.

I’m not proud of this.

Peer-rejection does crooked things to a young girl’s heart. It leaves her craving acceptance and approval . …

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Book Review: Shaken by Tim Tebow

Michelle Dragalin's Journey

Book Review: Shaken by Tim Tebow

Initially I thought that this book would be a vanity book by the author.  Please understand I have been impressed by Tim Tebow, I feel for him.  He has been cut from four football teams and he was an Heisman Trophy winner.  Of course he wouldn’t be the first football player to win this trophy and not make a mark as a NFL player.  Tim Tebow has been through the wringer in a very public format.  I give him credit, he has not bad mouthed his football teams. 

This book was provided to me at a very interesting time for me.  I have been “cut” from four different districts, not is such a public manner.  However, I reacted in the opposite was, I was very upset and reacted in a negative manner.  I did not see…

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Do You think I’m beautiful?

Nicki Edwards

Masterpiece: 1. A work of outstanding artistry, extraordinary skill, or workmanship. 2. An artist’s or craftsman’s best piece of work.

“For we are God’s own handiwork (His workmanship). We are His masterpiece, created anew in Christ Jesus so we may do the good things He prepared and planed in advance for us to do.”  (Ephesians 2:10)

Do you think I’m beautiful?

If I’m really honest, deeply hidden somewhere within my soul is this question. It’s the question I sometimes ask without ever speaking it out loud.

I might package the question in different ways.

  • “Does this dress suit me?”
  • “Do you like my haircut?”
  • “Does this colour look good on me?”
  • “Does my bum look big in this?” Yes, I have actually asked this question! (More than once!)

I’m really asking, “Am I beautiful?”

Do you think I’m beautiful?

This past week on her blog, my friend Melissa Taylor

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Fall Recipes from Susan Wiggs, author of Family Tree

The Secret Ingredient

It’s finally starting to feel like Fall in New York City, and it conjures up thoughts of kicking piles of leaves on long walks, pulling on our favorite sweater, snuggling on the couch with coffee and a good book, and of course enjoying all our favorite fall comfort foods . Today we’re sharing two recipes, both savory and sweet, from Susan Wiggs, bestselling author of Family Tree. The flavors of this Cheddar Beer Soup and the  Frosted Maple Cookies pair perfectly with her novel, which is set in Vermont (an idyllic place to be in the fall, don’t you agree?). We can’t wait to whip up both recipes this weekend to enjoy with friends and family.

Even though it’s not a cookbook, we know you will love this novel. Family Tree (did we mention it’s set in Vermont — on a maple syrup farm?!)is a powerful, emotionally complex story of love, loss, the pain…

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A Study in Perseverance

Living Our Days

Determination perseveres in spite of the word “no.”

When Rosalie Ranquist realized that she was called to be a missionary, her rough background and lack of education led church leaders to discourage her from pursuing her goal.  Even so, in 1967 she left for Papua New Guinea and her career was remarkable in every way — particularly in light of her seemingly inadequate preparation.  Although she is, technically, “retired” now, she continues her involvement as an international literacy consultant on a limited basis, and she still shares her favorite Scripture verse with others:

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord,”

I Corinthians 15:58

Knowing that Rosalie is facing some health challenges, she and her verse have been on my mind lately, and since I’ve been reading in I Corinthians 15 for…

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God Gives us What We Need When We Need It #AnywhereFaith

Heather C. King - Room to Breathe


Sometimes we want to see the provision in advance.

Before we step out in “faith,” we want to know we have enough: time, money, strength, ideas, training, support.  We want our offerings to God and our ministry for Him to be perfect.

But in Hebrews, we’re told:

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

God helps us in our time of need—not as a stockpile for our seasons of neediness.

This is a lesson I’m learning inch by inch.

For just about a whole year before it ever happened, I worried over a “need.”  My oldest daughter started middle school this September and I’ve been running over questions about the transition since last September.

When will the bus come?  How will she adjust to earlier morning hours?  How do…

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Maybe We Need to Rethink “Calling” #AnywhereFaith

Heather C. King - Room to Breathe


As a teen, I attended some huge youth conferences with my church and they tended to have something in common:

There was always a tremendously dynamic speaker who had a jaw-dropping testimony of God’s grace: He did drugs.  He was in a gang.  His girlfriend got pregnant and he made her have an abortion.  He was an alcoholic, who was addicted to pornography, and homeless.

Then He met Jesus.

By the time the testimony was over, the altars were flooded with teens crying and praying for God to save them and use them.

But my story didn’t seem to fit in.  They’d ask if anyone felt “called to ministry” and I’d raise my hand and pray that God use me “anywhere” and send me “anywhere.”

Only, how could He use a girl like me?  I’m relatively boring and surely the world truly needed displays of God’s grace and mercy on a grand scale.

I prayed…

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