I’m processing through what I’ve assumed to be true about following Jesus and I’m finding that there might be more than I thought to some things.
I’ve heard/read/listened to so many lessons about humility and self-sacrifice and putting others first. I think these are great things! Jesus lived a life of service for sure. But the way I’ve interpreted this before is that I should focus on other people. Love them and do things for them until I can’t give any more. That. is. exhausting.
And then this week I read Matthew 22:37-39. Jesus was talking to his disciples and told them, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (ESV emphasis mine)
As yourself. Love others the way that I love myself.
I don’t need to only focus on other people. God knows that I need attention too. Not in an arrogant, narcissistic, me me me way, but in an intentional, refreshing, making me better way.
I’ve focused on loving myself by journaling and taking care of my body and taking pride in who I am. There are some times in the past where I would have looked at this week and called myself self-centered because of how much I’ve thought about this. Whatever.
After investing in myself, I feel better equipped to love others. I’m no expert, but I think that might have been God’s intention when He told us to love others well and to love ourselves well.
If you want, you can join me in writing letters to yourself. This probably sounds super cheesy to some of you. But take time to think about the things you admire in yourself. God has given everyone incredibly unique gifts and they all deserve attention. Thank Him for those gifts and encourage yourself to use them for good things!
You are valuable and worthy of love, admiration, and respect- especially from yourself.