The following statements are taken from online responses to the important subject of self worth. People talked about their struggles to fulfill the Commandment to love God above all things and to love our neighbor as yourself.
Donna: When I’m having a hard time loving myself, I remind myself that I am one of God’s children, created by Him, and loved by Him in a way I can’t even imagine. If God loves me, how can I not love myself?
Bill S.: There are truly times when I haven’t liked what I have done or thought. I try to go back to the person I have hurt, maybe my wife, one of my adult sons, or a friend and say to them, “I am sorry for what I did or said, please forgive me.”
My mother taught me a long time ago when I was young that unless I loved myself, I could never truly love others. She was a pretty wise lady. I’m still a work in progress day by day trying to be the best version of myself.
Mary Jo: I have been meditating on gratitude! As I see the many ways in which God has loved me, I am grateful and thankful for his great mercy! Then it is hard not to have the same mercy on others! In this Year of Mercy may we bask in that love made so apparent on the Cross!
Suzzy: I have struggled with thinking I am only “good” if I don’t look after myself only others. Of course, any mistakes I have made – well I was just a worthless human being. Until one day I wanted to go to a special confession so I made an appointment. After talking with the priest for nearly an hour, I left crying tears of joy. Why? Because he blessed me and said, “So, you made some bad choices, that’s all.”
That was the start of my looking at myself differently, and focusing on accepting myself as Jesus accepts me, and that has freed me immensely!
Andrea: What I have learned is that God doesn’t condemn but loves me unconditionally. I am so thankful for his mercy and forgiveness. Just because we have made mistakes, does not mean we are worthless. We are human, that’s why we need Jesus! We learn and try to be better.
Doug: I didn’t have loving parents so it took me a long time to realize that spiritual love (agape) is not looked at as vanity and all the adjectives that suggest it.
Juliana: Either I don’t know how to love myself as Jesus does, or I don’t believe it is so. It has been a major challenge because there is so much about my life I loathe: failed marriage (and choice of a marriage partner); children with huge struggles who I only get to parent half the time; major financial debts and problems; a house to which I never want to come home; and the list goes on and on.
What do I like about my life? Nothing right now, but somehow I still have hope, and that is of God. I have to believe better things lie ahead and that the trials I’m going through are somehow going to make a difference in the future.
RD: It is easy to look at life and wonder about your value. Growing up in a poorer neighborhood, there is a general climate of low expectations, and it’s easy to believe you will not amount to much. God allowed me to move out of that environment, and now, I’ve lived and raised my own children in an affluent neighborhood, full of very high expectations.
To my surprise, that can really make you doubt your value as well, as you can never quite live up to ever-increasing expectations. At first you are accomplishing goals and “bettering” yourself but somehow you can still find yourself in a place where what you are doing doesn’t feel worthwhile anymore. I understand that it’s more important to know our value in who we are (children of God) than in what we do.
Posted on Fri, March 18, 2016
by The Lafourche Gazette