What do you think you are worth? Last time we talked about how other people look at us, and it’s not always flattering. This week let’s think about how we define our own self-worth.
I struggle with feeling like I’m not good enough. It’s easy to compare ourselves to friends at school, people we work with, or our church family. We’ll always be able to find someone who is smarter or prettier or better at being a Christian than us. Most of the time, if we’re looking at people the wrong way, we can find somebody who we think isn’t as good or fun to be around as us. But is looking down on other people a healthy way to build our self-esteem?
Humility isn’t exactly in fashion today, but it’s so important.
For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. – Romans 7:18-19
On our own, we aren’t good. We’re human, we mess up, and it’s that way for everybody. When we do what’s right that’s because of God – directly if we’re trying to live the Christian life or indirectly if we’re just trying to be moral people (because God sets the standard for morals).
For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. – Romans 12:3
We need to be careful not to be conceited. It’s easy to think, “Oh, I helped somebody today. How good of me.” The problem is, even when we are doing all we can, we still couldn’t be justified under our own power to a perfect God.
How depressing is that? The good news is that even though we can’t do it on our own, God still has a plan for us.
Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 3:13-14
God has a call for us. There is something He wants to give us, and that should make us feel pretty special.
And we are special, each of us, because He made us on purpose.
For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well. – Psalms 139:13-14
God knew us before we were born, and we are special to Him.
So I shouldn’t think that I am worthless because I’m not good enough.
I shouldn’t think I am good on my own or better than anyone else.
But I can think that I am uniquely designed by God, and He will give me situations to nurture and teach me exactly when I need them. So if I don’t give up, I can become the best version of myself. God will love me then, and He loves me the way I am now.
What are some ways you keep your idea of yourself balanced?
May the Lord bless and keep you,