Psalm 139:13-15 ESV / 167 helpful votes
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Loving Yourself as Christ loves you.
I wrote this book because I am overweight. I know for a fact that I am not alone. I have been fat, I have been thin and everywhere in between. The thing is, no matter where the scale lands, I do not focus on the beautiful person that I am. I do not acknowledge that God says I am beautiful, I tend to adopt society’s contemptuous feeling towards being overweight and I use it against myself.
There are as many reasons for people to be overweight as there are people. It can be a physical illness, a disability that reduces mobility, growing up in a family that had bad eating behaviors. It can be a bad diet, a sedentary life style, poor sleep habits, certain medications, the list goes on and on.
In my case, there were a multitude of reasons I am heavy but I believe it started in my childhood. I grew up with a Mother that meant well and truly thought she was helping me but actually cemented unrealistic weight goals in my mind.
There are certain things in our society that drive me crazy. It seems that jokes about heavy people are almost the norm. Instead of trying to get to know a heavy individual and understand their unique situation, fat people are shunned and made fun on in lots of ways. As a result, self loathing sets in and self image goes away. All to often we resort to cutting ourselves and our weight down before anyone else can do it.
Another thing, why do we think we have to announce to our circle of friends that we have gained so much weight and are miserable? Do we really think that they didn’t notice or worse yet that we do not realize that our size is now 16 instead of 8? We tend to be our own worst critics.
Then there is the self loathing dialog that we have with ourselves all the time. Personally, the things that I think about myself I would never tolerate if someone did it to another person.
Let me remind you of one unconditional truth, the way you see yourself in no way is an accurate picture of what Christ has done for you. There is one way out of this diet crazed life we feel we must live. We must love ourselves as God does.
Sometimes I think that we feel we need permission to love (or even like) ourselves.
It is scriptural. We are to love ourselves, not to the point of idolizing ourselves, but to the point where we love ourselves simply because God loves us.
First however, we have to take what the Bible says and figure out how in the world to apply it in our lives.
Since the world began women have been finding ways to criticize themselves. It is a rare woman who has a good self image.
We live on self-rejection. One time I was asked if I was happy with the person God made me to be. I answered of course I am, well except for (fill in the blank) , ok maybe I think he could have improved the design a bit.
Instead of delighting in how He created us, we call ourselves ugly, clumsy, fat, dumb and worthless. We beat ourselves up emotionally because we do not measure up to the standards we have set for ourselves. Or should I say that we have let others set for us.
Is it to much to ask to love what I see in the mirror instead of throwing the mirror in the closet where it can never haunt me again? I want to look in the mirror and see what God sees.. That means I have to start seeing myself as I really am, right at this moment. Not after I have finally lost those excess pounds, or fixed my chin, teeth or boobs and am wearing skinny jeans.
When I can look at myself and see the real me and love the real me, that is when the chains of bondage have been broken.
When I can base my self worth on my identity in Christ and not on my accomplishments, looks or the job I hold. That is when the chains of bondage have been broken.
When I realize that I do no need to be loved of approved of by virtually every person in my life, only God, that is when the chains of bondage have been broken.
God offers us unconditional love, through His grace we are saved. However, grace sometimes does not come easily to us simply because of how we have conditioned ourselves to think. We have to start giving ourselves some slack and start believing what God tells us.
Dig for the answers to the following questions.
Look at Romans 8: 37-39 and list what can separate us from God’s love from us. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
In Ephesians 2:4-5 it says that even though we were dead in our sins God did what for us? Why did He do it? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Psalm 86:15, In your own words, write down what this verse means to your life. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Is there one other person who loves you enough to do these things for you?
• Let His son die for your sins
• Made you alive together with Christ
• Rejoice over you with gladness
• Quiet you
• Exalt you
• Take all your anxieties
• Keeps His covenant with you
• Keep a steadfast love
Take back your life dear one, throw away the distorted belief system and get in line with the way God views you. Take your eyes off your failures and keep your eyes on God. Isn’t it wonderful to realize that God loves us as if we were His only child. God wants us to love ourselves so that we can show His love to all we meet. Our self doubts cannot destroy what God feels for us, love is who He is and what He does.
Take control and smash the roadblocks that are keeping you from seeing yourself as God does.
Take a minute and write down those things which keeps you from seeing yourself as God does. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Are you seeing a pattern? What can you do to interrupt those behaviors and ways of thinking when you recognize them? What new ways of thinking and behaving can you substitute? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Come up with a plan to align your views of yourself with God’s views. Write it down.