Hm. “Things you like and dislike about yourself” That’s the subject of today’s (day 26) challenge in the 30 Day Challenge that I am doing.
Interestingly I could probably name and more easily think of things that I dislike about myself than those that I like about myself.
As Christians humility – humbleness of heart – is seemingly encouraged.
Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring. 2 Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips.
To name but one example. Add to this the fact that I do have such a very poor self-image and is it any wonder that I do more easily, more readily think of those things that I dislike about myself over those things that I like about myself.
And I seriously doubt I am alone in this. Even if you yourself are not a Christian is the other part – the poor self-image, the tendency to list the things you dislike about yourself rather than those things you like, ringing familiar to you?
And in truth and love I have to ask the question should we really be like this? Should we even be allowing ourselves to be like this? Are we, by accepting this in ourselves, not feeding, reaffirming, this poor self-image in ourselves? Are we not defeating ourselves even before we have begun something?
And what about where we do have a faith? Does this spirit of dejection of defeatism, this constant, albeit often covert often sub-conscious, self-criticism have any place in that faith?
In failing to recognize our good aspects are we not failing to recognize that which Christ himself and the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit has done in us?
In 1 Corinthians 4:7 we read…
7 For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not? (NIV)
In context this is about boasting of things in such a way that it gives the impression that they are of your own doing not Christ’s. And as such this scripture may not seem particularly relevant here.
But I ask, is not our poor self-image, the acceptance and feeding of it, failing to recognize what Christ and God’s Holy Spirit has achieved in us, just as boasting of any achievements as if they are our own, is failing to recognize the self-same thing?
See I know the person I was before I became a Christian and before inviting God’s Holy Spirit to work in, on and through my life. And I know the person I have and am becoming as a result of that.
And I know and stand on the promise of the scripture in 2 Corinthians 5:17
17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (KJV)
But in the way I see myself am I truly standing on that promise and truth?
I like (even love) the heart that I have for other, the heart for others that Christ has given me.
I like (even love) the passion I have for God’s word, the passion that Christ has given me.
I like (even love) the fact I respect people and seek to respect people in the way that Christ would have me do so, because Christ has enabled me to do so.
I like (even love) the creativity that He has given me.
But most of all, I love the way that even though I had and still struggle with such a poor self-image, even though I have messed up so badly in my life before, still He chose me. Still He uses me. and that if I have achieved anything I have done so in and though Him .
God’s grace is so amazing and I am so very grateful for that and the fact that he chose to shine His grace on me.
So today, through this post I will not live the past, that poor self-image, nor will I boast of the present or future for myself but for what Christ has done in me and for me. And I will give thanks for that grace that I mentioned. That grace that He in his mercy chose, he chooses to shine on us.