(Post by: Lilly Hobbs)
Have you seen all the cute coffee mugs, bags, and sweatshirts lately?
Have you heard the saying that’s been going around?
Did you see the message that’s recently been shared all over social media?
The world has recently been putting this message out to everyone and it is “supposed” to fix all our problems in life…
The saying is this: If you can learn to love yourself, then everything will be ok.
Can I be honest with you? The Church and churched people in general have accepted this and have started sharing this message.
This really hit me last week as my dad and I were visiting one of our dearest friends in a Fort Worth jail cell. He said someone, another Christian as a matter of fact, told him this was the fix to all his issues… learn to love himself.
After some discussion with Dad, our friend was the first to say that loving himself was actually the reason we were visiting him through a glass and concrete wall. This hit us like a ton of bricks!!! He was so right and needed to understand what loving himself really looked like. A great conversation followed, and we are still praising God for that opportunity!!
I feel the need to shine some light on this topic today. I want to examine this message of self-love through the Word of God.
Let’s start off in Mark 12:30-31 which says, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”
This is a very popular verse. One you have probably heard before.
When you boil that down, this verse is telling us to 1. Love God and 2. Love people.
There is absolutely nothing in that verse that says to love yourself. Jesus gives us our two greatest commandments right there and I think we are trying to ignore them as a Church and society.
So, I am going to be bold and say this… I think that we have twisted and tweaked that verse to say what we want it to say. Because truly, deep down inside, we really don’t want to love God with everything we have, and we definitely do not want to love other people and care more about them.
What we really want to do is love ourselves because we are selfish.
Francis Chan once said this, “Nothing you will ever do in this life will ever matter unless it is about loving God and loving the people He has made.”
You see, we are sinful. We really shouldn’t love ourselves because we are nothing without Jesus and what He did for us on the cross. If we could love ourselves and have everything work out and be great, then the Gospel is useless.
Matthew 6:33 tells us to seek first the kingdom and then everything else will be added to us.
David Platt said this, “We are settling for a Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves.”
Instead of loving ourselves, I think we need to learn how to be loved by God.
Because once we do, we will realize our true worth and our pure identity that is made possible through Jesus. Then, we will want to love God and others with everything we have because we know how much God loves us.
Does this make sense?
It’s impossible to learn to love yourself without loving Jesus first.
We need to love ourselves, in that, we love who God made us to be. Our peace will come through what Jesus did for us. Each of us; on the cross.
Abandon yourself and let God refine you. Let Him determine who you are and how much you are worth.
The world spreads lies. Jesus speaks truth.
SO WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSE?
= Have you bought into this message of self-love?
= What are you going to do differently?
= Is there someone you know who needs to hear this?