Discussing his low self-esteem, cartoon character Charlie Brown says, ‘It goes back to when I first set foot on the stage of life. They looked at me and said, ‘He’s just not right for the part!” You may smile, but when you have spent your life engaged in self-punishment you know exactly what he means. Many of us who wear a game face in public, spend our days doing the same thing, cutting ourselves down.
Your self-image is second only to your faith in God. It doesn’t matter what others think of you, what matters is what you think of yourself – based on what God thinks! Self-esteem has to come from self. That is why it is hard to believe the good things people say about you when you cannot see them in yourself. Plus, how you treat others flows directly from your reservoir of personal dignity and self-respect. It is impossible to “Love your neighbor as yourself…” when you do not even like yourself. Paul says a man should love his wife like he loves himself. But when you detest yourself how can you love your mate?
The only time any of us even comes close to perfection is on a job application! Stop cutting yourself down! God made you the way you are. Start complimenting Him on the great job He did. And remember, He loves you unconditionally – and that is the only reason you need for loving yourself!
Used with permission and written/compiled from multiple sources by Tim Hetzner, President of Lutheran Church Charities