In my early childhood, I was the first grandchild, so I had it made – at least I thought I did. I was a sweet little girl, with curls of golden blond. I learned how to tap dance and do ballet when I as just a tyke. My mother was smitten with the movies and especially Shirley Temple. She was convinced that I would someday become a star or at least Miss America. Time changed all that. More children were added to our circle of family members and I became the low man on the totem pole, while the others had their moments in the limelight. As I grew into a teenager, I became the chubby kid. I wasn’t cute anymore when my first pimple appeared. I didn’t feel good about myself. It began to eat away at me and continued for many years after. Still I was fortunate to have a loving family that cared about me and my future, but those feelings of self worth somehow got lost in the mix. I continued to believe that I would never amount to anything worth while.
Many children grow up thinking they can’t do anything right in their parents’ eyes. Many carry that baggage into adolescence and beyond. As we attend church, we hear words like “serving others,” “don’t be proud,” You’re no better than anyone else.” Though these words hold some truth, they can also serve as weapon by our greatest enemy. Satan wants us to believe we’re worth more than we think we are. He wants us to believe we deserve the best things in life. He also uses those thoughts to boost our ego and make narcissists out of us.
The simple truth is that we are valuable to God. He considers us His own children. He knew what we would be before we were even conceived. He had a blueprint established for our life. He wants us to succeed – not because of what we personally can do, but because He loves us with a love far greater than that of our parents. His love holds no strings. Even in our sinful state, He loves us unconditionally.
As I mentioned earlier, my self esteem suffered for many years. I still have trouble with it at times. I think part of the reason for that is because I never felt worthy of forgiveness – of a place in heaven – of a relationship with God. A friend directed me to Psalm 139 when I was going through a particularly rough patch. It has become one of my favorietes, with time, because it is the perfect explanation of God’s love for us. If you have the chance to read it today, do so.
Satan will use our ego to get to us in many ways. He will make us think we deserve better. He will promise us things he can’t deliver and make us believe we can gain those things on our own. When He tried to tempt Jesus in the desert, he even used Holy Scripture to tempt the Son of God. Our God is so much more powerful than the devil, We can’t let him deceive us into thinking otherwise. God always wins.
Today we need to think about our own arsenal of weapons to use against our enemy. Jesus gave us the perfect example during His own temptation. He used the Word of God – the Bible – to substantiate the truth of His power. Turn to it today for positive reinforcement. It will change how you feel about yourself and your place on earth and in the heavenly realms.