Day 12: Loving Ourselves
How do I love myself?
You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Here is the “surprise” from yesterday’s lesson: The reference point for loving others is to love — get ready —yourself! “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But it’s not easy.
Some confuse loving themselves with a chocolate binge or designer sneakers they can’t afford, just to feel good! But rewards from self-indulgence can be fleeting.
Some have difficulty loving themselves because of intense feelings of inferiority: “I’ll never be like her!” “I can never measure up!” They compare themselves with others, a practice called “unwise” by the Apostle Paul (see 2 Corinthians 10:12).
Still others disparage themselves because of serious mistakes they have made, or sins that have held them captive. They’ve yet to discover God’s remedy, that He graciously releases us from the burdens of the past when we ask for and receive His forgiveness.
The key to loving yourself is to see yourself as Jesus sees you. You are of infinite worth to Him, precious in His sight, the object of His great love, filled with His Spirit, part of His body of believers, commissioned to fulfill the unique design He has for you. Take a moment to ponder the amazing creation you are in Jesus!
As one who is intensely loved by God — unshackled from a poor self-image and baggage from the past — you can love yourself and then “love your neighbor as yourself.”
God created you in love. How can you love yourself as God loves you? Need ideas?