See Yourself As God Sees You

How do you see yourself? Pause for a moment and think about it. What thoughts have you had about yourself.

I used to see myself the way my mother seen me, a trash, unworthy of anything good. So many of us find ourselves basing our self-worth on how others see us and our accomplishments, feeling shame from our past, defining our value based on our looks, or setting unrealistic standards for ourselves.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. If on,y we could see ourselves as God sees us.

I want to show you the three thought patterns that can act as roadblocks to our thinking and living the way God desires. These destructive thought patterns were actually identified by Albert Ellis in 1973.

We will contrast ideas with what 1 Peter 1 tells us about how we can prepare our minds for action. Adjusting our thinking to Scripture is the foundation of being holy in all we do. (1 Peter 1:15). Without something solid to base our lives on there is no hope of anything.

1. I must be loved or approved by virtually every other person in my life.

If we are living to make sure that others love us, we give them the permission to evaluate us based on what we do – we give people the power to determine our self-worth.

When we leave home, many of us have “internalized parents.” who are voices in our head that tells us what we should do, what is important, and how we see ourselves. Have you ever been in a situation where you have to make a decision and you can hear one of your parents says, That’s not responsible…” or “I told you what would happen?”

Many of us are so concerned about being loved that we give the opposite sex permission to elevate us. Growing up we might sacrifice our own identity to get attention and acceptance, even to the extent of pretending not to be bright or kind because we think others won’t be impressed. Or we might deny ourselves food to use weight to try to fit in with the body images portrayed in on Television or social media. Even as adults, we buy into the beauty myth, thinking that our appearance is the only thing that matters. And that will it will bring us acceptance and approval from a partner.

I have a friend who has taken care of herself all her life. She will even wear hats outside so the sun will not damage her face. Now that she is getting older, she is getting dark spots on her face. She almost had a nervous breakdown over a light brown spot on her face.

If we are living to make sure that others love us for how we look we give people the power to determine our self-worth.

Many even feel pressure from a church community to measure themselves according to certain stereotypes. I know a lady that was told she was not allowed to be a member of the church, because she drank coffee. Some people believe that women are supposed to be nurturing, quiet and well-behaved. I tell you if I didn’t have a breakdown every now and again I wouldn’t be normal. If people expect me to be perfect I can do without those people in my life.

Men are supposed to be competent leaders, rough the gruff, and have a sensitive side too. If we lived to please the church, we may find ourselves negating the interests or gifts that God has given us.

There are plenty of churches out there that don’t expect you to be prefect, prim and proper all the time. They see you as God sees you.

2. My past history is an all-important determiner of the present behavior; because some thing once strongly affected my life, it should definitely continue to do so.

You may feel controlled by a secret. You may have had something happen to you that you have revealed to no-one,nor perhaps to only a few people. Perhaps you feel shame about certain aspects of the family you grew up in, or maybe you have sinful habits you feel embarrassed about, such as gossip of some things you’ve done in the past. Or maybe you feel ashamed of something that has been done to you,

I will tell you, if you don’t deal with these issues they will continue to destroy you. They will have control of you. And healing will never come. You can deal with past sin, family histories, as well as past violations to your body and minds.

It is important to identify whether your feelings in these situations are destructive shame or healthy convictions. Healthy conviction always separates our identity from our behavior. Shame links the two together, so wrong behavior taints our image of ourselves. Healthy conviction alerts us to the fact that we have done something that goes against our internalized values.

I hid my past experiences and events inside for over 40 years. Not telling a single soul. I destroyed my health both physical and emotional because of it. I wasn’t able to even start healing until I broke loose and started sharing my story with others. The grip the hate and Unforgiveness I had for myself and everyone around me began to loosen.

I wasted 40 years of my life because I was afraid to tell a soul with the feeling that they would judge me. When all I really needed to do was to see myself the way God sees me.

Biblical conviction is a God-given emotion that “red flags” a behavior and tells hx it is an act of rebellion against God. It spurs us to confess our sins and experience the love and forgiveness that God has provided for us through Jesus with His death on the cross. 1 John 1:9 tells us, “If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Any feelings of guilt that come after we’ve confessed our sin are not from God, but maybe from ourselves or Satan. We will still have to live with the consequences of our sins. God disciplines us to get us back on track so we can continue to experience God’s law be and plan for our lives. Our struggles can bring us closer to God and heighten our faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may be proven genuine and may result in praise, glory, and honor when Christ is revealed (1 Peter1:6-7).

3. I should be thoroughly competent, adequate, and successful in all possible respects in order to consider myself worthwhile.

Ten percent of people will struggle with some form of clinical depression in their lifetime. Depression can be biological or situational, and often can be the result of both. However, one of the leading causes of depression is setting a standard that is unattainable, but you wear yourself out by trying anyway. One of the messages that plays over and over in our minds is that we have to “be perfect.”

We often fall into the trap of feeling responsible not just for ourselves, but for the lives of others. I have to stay when I stopped feeling responsible for how my husband behaved or how he felt. It took a huge weight of my shoulders. We don’t have to take on the weight of everyone’s world. We need to only be responsible for ourselves and our young children if you have them.

It is often difficult for us to separate our identity from our behavior. We feel if we don’t measure up. It reflects on who we are as individuals.

Remember God’s grace is a gift. God heals us and brings us freedom to live a new life. Sometimes grace does not come easily to us. We have to work at changing our thinking. We need to humble ourselves when we don’t measure up, knowing that God already sees us as the perfect reflections of Christ (1 John 3:1-3).

Once we extend grace to ourselves, we are able to extend grace to those around us. We need to cease trying to live up to the distorted beliefs we and others have and learn to line our thinking up with the way God views us.

Instead of being so focused on our failures, we will be able to lend a helping hand to those around us and be a vessel of grace to those we come in contact with wherever we go.

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