The longer I work with people the more I discover about relationships. One glaring complication I’ve observed is how low self-esteem negatively affects the human personality. Whenever someone is not walking in healthy self-esteem it affects their relationships with everyone around them every single time.
When I look back on my earlier life I can plainly see that I suffered greatly with low self-esteem. Especially in my teen years, I became very introverted and mainly kept to myself. It got to the point I would not even participate in activities that I was good at for fear my success would draw unwanted attention. Needless to say, trying something new was out of the question…how much worse would it be to gain attention for failing than succeeding? This was a chance I was not willing to take.
The resulting life was one of seclusion and anxiety. I became very afraid, and lived life on the fringes of society. The low view I had of myself closed me off to the world around me, and I became like a zombie…walking through my existence with a lifeless gaze and devoid of hope. That was not God’s plan for my life, and it is not His plan for your life, either!
“When we are living a life of fellowship with God, we receive a revelation of His love for us that we can identify with”.
God has a plan to give you an abundant, rich life of peace and fulfillment. That doesn’t mean we do not face challenges, but we face them together, with our heavenly Father. We experience life in the joy and strength of His presence. When we are living a life of fellowship with God, we receive a revelation of His love for us that we can identify with. We discover that we are His children, and He is our Father, and His plans are to proper us and give us a hope and a future. This revelation changes everything!
It didn’t happen quickly. At first, I barely trusted God with my day to day. Only as I spent more time with God in prayer and Bible study did I begin to see that God had a plan for a wonderful future. A future…for me! Hope had been birthed from my relationship with a loving Heavenly Father and I began to see the world in a different way. Instead of fear and failure I was filled with hopeful expectation and possibility. In Christ, everything had changed. I wasn’t some low-life worthless piece of trash, but a son of God, an heir of God, and joint-heir with Christ Jesus.
Being saved and placed into God’s family by faith changed my perspective on everything. It can change your perspective as well. For me, one of the most interesting things God has to say about our relationships with others is contained in Luke 10:27. Jesus declares:
“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,”fn] and “your neighbor as yourself.” NKJV
This is huge. You are to love your neighbor AS yourself. In other words, Jesus is saying you are to love others, in a similar way or in like manner that you love yourself. This begs the question: Do I love myself? And if not, how can I then be expected to love others? This I believe is a very good question and underlines the point I’m trying to make. If I can only love others as much as I love myself, then it stands to reason if I have a low self-esteem I will have problems displaying God’s love to others.
This is why fellowship and personal devotion with God is so very important. It’s in our times of prayer and fellowship with God that He reveals his love into our hearts. It’s in spending time with Him that we come to realize our relationship as children of God. It’s a position of peace and provision, not fear and striving. When we embrace this reality of son-ship, we experience God’s love for our lives and develop a healthy self-esteem. It is a self worth not based on our works, but the finished work of Jesus Christ. It is out of this view of our selves that we are made free and empowered to really love and serve others.
Things began to change for me as I turned the corner into my 20’s. It got even better as I passed my 30’s. The more I spent time with God, the more I came to peace with who I was and who I was not. Fear is gone. Self-pity and hopelessness have passed away. I want to encourage you to tread the same path. Turn from the lies of our defeated enemy and embrace the truth: You are a child of God! Repent where you need to. Commit to spending time with God in the Word and prayer and see your self worth soar from zero to hero. There’s an abundant life of God’s peace and provision waiting for you.