Most of us really don’t like ourselves. We are too tall or short, too fat or thin, too reserved or too lazy. We don’t like ourselves because we don’t think before we act or we think too much and don’t act at all. We don’t like ourselves because we are not attractive enough or we don’t have enough charisma or we are too lonely or we run away from our problems. Maybe we think we are too forward and forceful or too confrontational or maybe we think we are too analytical, too self-conscious or just plain wimpy! Whatever the case, we seem to be unhappy with ourselves, which brings us to the question – as a Christian aren’t we supposed to not like ourselves so we can be more like Jesus? So, shouldn’t we be happy in our unhappiness? Let’s stop already! Too many questions – let's find some answers!
The real problem with not liking ourselves is not that we are unlikeable. On the contrary, most of us can rattle off the names of many people we know who actually do like us. The problem is that we determine our desire to like ourselves by using an unreliable and sliding scale. Here is the process: our self assessment usually comes to the front of our minds when difficult things happen - we have just gone through a tough experience or a break up of some kind or we have come up short in some effort. We look at the results that are obviously not ideal and then inevitably compare ourselves to someone else who happens to have been successful in the same circumstance...and surprise surprise, the seeds of self loathing are planted!
This is such a flawed approach in so many ways, yet it is such a common approach among so many people. To change that which is common requires taking an uncommon path that begins with our common conclusions. Let me explain: A common reason for our not liking ourselves is that we are flawed. The Bible even verifies this as it tells us we are “born in sin and shapen in iniquity.” We read this and think that all too common thought, "Well, no wonder I don’t like myself!" and now we have begun accepting a premise (based on fact though it may be) without considering the larger and infinitely more important viewpoint. This unconsidered viewpoint is the heavenly one – it is God’s own viewpoint and observations of what and who we are.
What does God think of what and who we are? Is He looking down at us flabbergasted at our condition? Does he see us as broken beyond repair and a total waste of His time? No! We know He sees us differently because the Bible is not only clear on the matter, it is detailed as well. Therefore, should we not try and adopt His perspective of us as a baseline for our “likeability” rather than our own flawed and ever-changing conclusions of our “likeability”? Yes! But how?
Please, take some time and listen to our July 10th 2016 broadcast, “But, do You Really Like Yourself?” and give yourself the opportunity to refresh the way you see yourself. If you let it, this program can help to change and elevate the very path of your thoughts!
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