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In Search of Self-Esteem
“A Christian view of the needs of people must always begin with the understanding that man is made in the image of God. To clearly identify what that means requires the recognition that the God of the Bible is infinite and personal. An infinite God is non-contingent being, that is, He depends on nothing outside of Himself for His existence.” -Dr. Larry Crab -
And I might add that He needs nothing outside of Himself to define who he is; He is God all by Himself. On the other hand we as finite beings are always looking for the approval of others, starting from child hood. Look daddy, did you see me on the swing; I went real high!
I'm going to take this to school to show my buddies what I've built with my own hands. I finally made it up the corporate ladder so maybe my friends will recognize me now and show some respect.
We go to universities and get that degree so we can have letters behind our name, but some of us put all the letters in front so they go about saying weird things like; My name is Reverend, Doctor, Pastor John doe. No, that is not your name; you will not find that on your birth certificate and your mother certainly never called you that. Did you not know in grammar school you were taught that only one title goes in front of your name and the rest goes in back?
Spider man and some of the other super heroes put on a mask to hide their identity. Super Man on the other hand takes of his identity to reveal who he really is. As teenagers in the 60's we were on a quest to find our self (all we had to do was look in the mirror). When we became adults we set out to define our self. Then when we got older we suffered a mid life crises because some were along the line we thought we lost our self; and went out dating some one ten years our junior to see if we still had it (what ever “it” was I'm still baffled).
The Bible tells us that we must put on the whole armor of God that we may be able to stand against the fiery darts of Satan (the Devil) because in his arsenal are psychological weapons that are most powerful. He uses fear, doubt, anger, hostility, worry and guilt to shake us to sift us as wheat. Low self-esteem is one of the most deadly in its effectiveness against the Christian and non Christian alike. It puts in us feelings of inferiority, inadequacy, and low self worth. These feelings can have us shackled even though we are grounded in faith in God's word. For years my potential as a minister was paralyzed because of low self-esteem. My gifts were wasted, Satan seemingly had the victory. Oh but God. . .
God weeps over this. He is not so much angry as he is grieved. He weeps over the paralysis of our potential through low self-esteem. The cost is so great, for it seems all of us have to struggle against this. God does not want to see us self destruct over this. He wants us to have the right kind of vision about our self, not one that you thinks of yoursekf as inferior and unable to do any thing. I'm reminded of how God had brought his people to the edge of the promise land and all they had to do is to go in by the power of God and take it. They sent out the recon-patrol to scout out the land and brought back this report. “But the people are giants of incredible strength. And the cities are not really cities; they're forts. And those descendants of Anak, the Naphtaliim- why in their sight we were as grasshoppers.” (Numbers 13:31-33) How low can you go!! Do you see yourself as grasshopper. Caleb on the other hand said: “They are as bread to us. We don't care how big they are; we can eat them up just like bread, and we can do it because it is God's will for us. It is God's will for us, isn't that a great statement? He wants you to be free of this and you can.
I once heard a story about a bazaar day in an Indian village when I was a little boy that went like this. Everybody brought his wares to trade and sell. One farmer brought in a whole covey of quail. And he had tied a string around one foot of each bird. The other ends of all the strings were tied to a ring on a central stick. And the quail walked around in circles, around and around they would go. Nobody seemed interested in buying any quail, until along came a devout Brahman. He believed in the Hindu idea of respect for all life and his heart of compassion went out to these poor little creatures. So he bought all of them for a price and set them all free and what happened next? They continued to go around and around and around as if they were still tied together. Finally he had to shoo them off but they reassembled and continued their march in circles.
Jesus Christ has set us free, unbound, released but some of us are still in Satan's grip being oppressed by low-self esteem. “Consider the incredible love that the Father has shown us in allowing us to be called “children of God” (1John 3:1) You don't need to look outside of yourself to be validated by anyone so you can feel like somebody. God came down to show you what he looks like in the person of Jesus Christ and to defeat the works of the Devil so you can be free. You are somebody, you are a “Child of God”