Recently we were confronted by a Christian leader who believed loving yourself is not only selfish, but it is also unbiblical—that “Christians already think much too highly of themselves.” However, by going through the love chapter in 1 Corinthians 13, we may be able to draw a different conclusion. Answer each of the questions that follow the descriptions of love below–and see if you believe it is right to love yourself.
Love is patient. Do you believe you should be impatient with yourself?
Love is kind. Do you believe you should be unkind to yourself? Should you treat yourself cruelly?
Love does not dishonor others. Do you believe you should honor others yet dishonor yourself? Should you demean and put yourself down?
Love is not self-seeking. Do you believe your own interests should be of no account?
Love is not easily angered. Do you believe it is right to beat yourself up for the smallest things? And when you do, does it make you more Christ-like?
Love keeps no record of wrongs. Do you keep a running list of self-accusations?
Love always protects. Should you not protect yourself from harm or from people who take advantage of or abuse you?
Love always trusts. Do you always distrust yourself? Do you believe God wants you to distrust the very one He has made you to be? If so, how do you have any peace about making even the simplest decisions?
Love always hopes. Do you believe you shouldn’t hope for better things for yourself, such as peace in your heart, growth in character, or financial freedom?
Love always perseveres. Do you believe you should give up on yourself? Do you believe God, who IS love, agrees?
If you answer “No” to any of the above questions, then it shows that you DO hold beliefs that it is right to love yourself. However, maybe you also are now aware that you need to work on loving yourself more. When you do, you agree with the Father’s heart for you–and He really likes that.
Just to clarify–there are people who are narcissistic, self-absorbed, “full of themselves,” selfish, conceited, and “all about me.” However, we do not define any of these as loving themselves too much. We see a wound. We see a love-deficit. That’s the difference.
Until next week . . .
NOTE: If you or someone you know is in need of finding a safe place for emotional and/or spiritual healing and restoration, please contact us at The Father’s Heart Intensive Christian Counseling Ministry through our web site at www.fathersheart.com or email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
We are located in the North Georgia Mountains in a retreat-oriented environment and have established opportunities for ministry to individuals or couples for time periods as little as a few hours to as long as five days.