Self-Image: Discovering Your Value
– Dr. Charles Stanley
God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
We are [God’s] workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
Do you like the person you see in the mirror every day?
Liking yourself relates to self-image, which is not limited to your physical appearance. Self-image includes the total you—personality, talents and abilities, accomplishments, desires and goals, and spiritual relationship with the Lord. Nearly all of your behavior is based on who you think you are and how you feel about yourself.
Ultimately, your self-image is linked to who you are in Christ Jesus. If you have a relationship with Christ, you have accepted—to at least some degree—the fact that God so loved you that He sent Jesus to die for your sins so that you could have eternal life. (See John 3:16)
Do you know today—with certainty—that:
God loves you infinitely, unconditionally, and eternally?
- God stands ready to forgive you of all your sins and trespasses against Him and others?
- Jesus Christ valued you so much that He died so you might live forever with Him in Heaven?
- You are being transformed into the likeness of Jesus Christ as the Holy Spirit works within you?
Unfortunately, even people who can say yes to these questions sometimes have difficulty loving themselves. Friend, if God loves you and has forgiven you, you should love yourself. If God says you are valuable, you are!
But, no one can make you accept the fact that you are infinitely valuable to God. You must paint on your mental and emotional canvas the image that reflects what you believe to be true about yourself.
Holy, Blameless, and Loved
In his letter to the Ephesians, the apostle Paul wrote of the blessings we have because of our relationship with the Lord:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:3-5).
The apostle John wrote:
As Christians, we are worthy because Christ declares us to be worthy.
The Comparison Trap
Some people continually gauge their performance by comparing themselves to others. They are much more concerned with being, having, owning, or achieving the best than in giving their best effort.
Nobody can be number one all the time. If you continually try to best those around you, you are likely to suffer a major blow to your self-image each time you come in second. The greater the failure, the greater the blow to the self-image.
Jesus Christ is established as our role model in the Scriptures. We are to grow up spiritually to become like Him. No, we will never be perfect. Even so, the Holy Spirit is at work in us to transform us more and more into His likeness.
If you are a Christian yielded to the Holy Spirit’s work within you, you are not the same person today that you were last year. You are growing toward wholeness.
Every time you are tempted to compare your accomplishments with those of someone else, concentrate on doing your best.
Write down the all the attributes and gifts God has given you according to 1 John 4:10 and Ephesians 1:3-5. Consider starting a list of verses that affirm your worth in Christ. Review those verses whenever Satan attacks you with feelings of condemnation or low self-esteem.
Lord, forgive me for trying to evaluate my worth based on the things the world says make me important. Transform my mind so that I see myself as you see me—a valuable child of God. Amen.