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Seeds of the Kingdom

Loving yourself

by Angela Weir

14 January 2009

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You shall love your neighbour as you do yourself.
Matthew 19:19, Amp

We had been talking to a lady about all her anxieties and fears. She was unable to sit comfortably in a room with us and was anxious that whatever she said might be thought unkind or stupid. Then she said, ‘I’m such a horrible person’ and we knew we had found the root cause of all her problems.

Jesus commands us to love others as we love ourselves. He said ‘You shall love your neighbour as you do yourself’ (Matthew 19:19 Amp). But many of us find this difficult to do. We have been taught that it is wrong to boast about ourselves or our achievements so sometimes, even, we can go to the other extreme and begin to hate ourselves! There may be many reasons why we hate ourselves. Self-hatred had been passed down this lady’s family. Both her parents thought little of themselves and they in turn had drummed it into her as a child that she was useless and of no consequence.

But God has created us in His own image. The psalmist was able to say ‘I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made’ (Psalm 139:14, NIV) and this truth was brought home to me when our younger daughter studied anatomy in her training to become a doctor. She was thrilled by the intricacies of the human body and passed that thrill on to me. But it isn’t just our bodies that God created in such a wonderful way. It’s our souls and spirits too.

Every one of us is a unique and precious human being, deeply loved by God. God rejoices over the remnant of His people Zion with singing(Zephaniah 3:17) and I believe he rejoices over each one of us in the same way. This is why we should begin to love ourselves. Unless we do love ourselves we will find it hard to love our neighbour as Jesus commanded us to.

Prayer: Father, I thank you that I am fearfully and wonderfully made and that You love me so much. Please forgive me if I have hated myself and help me to recognise that I am Your precious creation. Help me to love myself and my neighbour. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Angela Weir has been associated with Ellel Ministries from the very beginning, first as an associate member of the ministry team and later as an associate teacher. She trained as an actress before moving to Cumbria, where she taught drama in a girls’ school. She now teaches and ministers at various Ellel Centres.

 

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