One of the majorly destructive myths of US culture is that self-esteem needs to be built up to a healthy level. There are a few things patently wrong with this. Mostly, it leaves God out of the picture by assuming that we have the ability to do things in and of ourselves. Some Christian psychologists seem to re-define the term to fit a biblical view. This also bothers me because it results in misconceptions and smooths the path to acceptance of similary termed secular ideas, not to mention that I think they usually hit the middle rather than defaulting to a purely biblical viewpoint on the issue.
My alternative, although I feel the need to study this further and welcome you joining me, is that we need to fully understand our purpose in God as he has revealed it to us. In secular self-esteem, we hold the statements of others or our accomplishments (and lack thereof) as the basis for our understanding of our own worth. This, ultimately is placing others before God by relegating God’s opinion as just another statement among many, if at all.
So where do we find our worth? Simply, in the sacrifice God made for us. Jesus Christ willingly died for us and God allowed his only and perfect son to be killed. We are told that all heaven rejoices when one soul is saved.
Apparently, God thinks much of us and so should we. We are the only creation He has expressed such a connection with. Our worth comes from God’s pleasure in us, His plan for us, and His provision to meet that plan. From this I draw that when I look at myself and find anything that is worthy of esteem, I should direct that esteem towards the creator, God and not myself.
We are part of creation and so are an example of His handy work. Additionally, we are given special attention in creation. We have our own day and that doesn’t include the creation of our women. We are the only part of creation God gave such attention. I like to consider humanity as God’s masterpiece. This care trickles down into each of us individually.
Another aspect, to think poorly of ourself is to suggest that God was not a mastercraftsman in you and calls into question His sovreignty and perfection. To think to highly of ourselves is to consider ourselves greater than God. Additionally. we should remember our sin as we calculate, but also that this is negated beause Christ already cleared this sin. Again, an example that we are nothing without the sustaining power of God.
I have not done much to support this with chapter and verse as I consider the references to scripture to by general and commonly accepted. I would gladly find support in the event that something here peaks someone’s interest.