I’ll be totally honest with you. I don’t always love myself. And I bet you don’t either. When I compare myself to certain others I don’t always measure up. My children know how much I love them, but there were times in their lives I could have done better. Sometimes I wonder why my wife loves me. I feel like I don’t deserve it. Loving oneself is sometimes harder than it seems to people on the outside looking in.
The Bible says that we should love our neighbor as we love ourselves. How can we do that very well unless we love ourselves first? The world and our TV screens are filled with people who don’t love themselves. They show it by hurting not only themselves, but hurting others. Instead of making the world a better place, they make it worse. Instead of helping out, they hinder. Far too often I am that person, too. And so are you. I want to love other people well. It’s just that I far too often get in the way of myself.
I’ve found it a great comfort to be surrounded by people who love me despite my faults and failures. I’m reminded on a daily basis just how much I fall short in so many ways. That’s why it’s good to be around those who love me so much that I can’t help but love myself. They do it by:
- using encouraging words when I don’t feel very encouraged
- simply sitting and listening
- creating opportunities to help me succeed
- making me laugh
- allowing me to be myself
- giving without expecting anything in return
- expressing appreciation for something I have done
- remaining loyal
- not allowing time or distance to impact our relationship
- bringing comfort when I feel nervous or under appreciated
A pastor friend of mine whom I respect very much recently met me for lunch. He commented that he’d really appreciated the things he’d seen me do online with respect to creativity and writing. He said, “It’s like you’re becoming who you really are.” For me it was the greatest compliment I could have received. He recognized a gift in me and saw that I was working hard to become the true me.
Even I can appreciate the true me. It’s why I’m passionate about you becoming the true you, too. The closer we are to fully utilizing the gifts we’ve been given as a Divine gift, the easier it is for us to love ourselves. And when we do that, we find it easier to show that same affection for those in our lives who need it, as well.
So love yourself like you really mean it. You are valuable. You are worth fighting for. You are full of gifts and talents given to no one else. You are appreciated. You are the creation of the Creator.
The world needs the true you.
What does loving yourself well look like?