What is your self-perception?
Do you struggle with self-worth? If so, it’s time to change your self-perception. Knowing God comes from within. Acceptance, peace, love come from inside of you. You don’t have to change to be worthy; your worthiness comes from within your true nature. It comes from the very fact that you are made in God’s image. Divine light isn’t just within you, it is you; you have the choice to keep the darkness of the world from covering it up and burying it deep within you.
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I wonder where our feelings of unworthiness come from? Sometimes they come from a lifetime of feeling like we’ve never measured up. Comparing ourselves to others often causes our feelings of inadequacy. These beliefs can begin at home or at school very early on in our lives. At a very young age, I felt that I could never measure up to what was expected of me. I won’t venture into why I believed that here, but the lasting effects on me because of that belief have been difficult to overcome. In fact, I’m still working on doing that very thing.
I’m going to throw out a wild thought. What if we came to the realization that this earthly world is not what matters? Hear me out because I know the first reaction will be WHAT? Of course it matters! And for our smaller (smaller as in not as big as eternity) picture, it does matter. But I want to consider the big picture…the huge picture…the ginormous for all eternity picture.
The spiritual world is the ‘real’ world. It’s the one that continues forever.
We can ‘separate’ ourselves from the earthly fears and negativity we’ve faced and understand that despite those obstacles, we are a part of something huge; we are made in God’s image which means we are a part of God, in conjunction with God. If we completely know and accept this, then we realize that in our own right, we are perfect.
When we know this, there’s no comparing to others because we completely understand that each individual, including ourselves, is made exactly the way she should be.
Imagine if we were so secure in our identity as a piece of all of the Light that is, that we knew of our perfect worth – because that’s what we are – perfect. In God. With God.
Now here’s where the earthly stuff matters. It matters not for us anymore. We know we are just the way we should be. It matters instead for all of those who haven’t figured it out yet, and it matters because of what God is calling us to do – make the earth His kingdom.
All of us raised in a Christian church recite the Lord’s Prayer. Some have a few different lines – I grew up saying ‘forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors’ and now attend a church where that part is ‘forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us,’ but basically it’s all the same. One line that never changes is this – ‘thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven… Did you get that? ‘On earth as it is in Heaven.’ God is calling us to make the earth His kingdom, just as Heaven is.
How do we create ourselves to be the kind of person who will make the earth His kingdom, just as Heaven is?
While there are things we have to do in order to make the earth His kingdom, most importantly there are ways we have to be.
To create a ‘me’ that can make the earth His kingdom, I have to acknowledge and nourish my relationship, my communion with God.
When I jump out of bed in the morning (or reluctantly roll out on the days I’m too tired) and find myself too busy to spark that connection with Jesus Christ, I really can’t complain about it. It’s my responsibility.
Having a poor perception of ourselves keeps us from doing what we’re called to do. I know when I feel I’m not good enough, I fail to move forward in who I am. That’s not what I want; that’s how I know I need to change how I perceive myself. I want to feel strong and confident in myself so that I can be those same things for others.
There are certain steps I work on every single day. See if they help you, too. Here’s what you can do:
Tips on How to Shift Your Self-Perception:
1. Begin each day with prayer, thoughtfulness, and love – not technology. As a tech fanatic, this is one I have to work at because my first impulse is to grab my phone to check and see what new things have been happening on Facebook. Challenge yourself to spend your first waking moments in quiet prayer.
2. Take time to meditate and journal. Yes, I said meditate. Sometimes in our prayer life we spend all the time talking to (at) God and forgetting to listen. Without the listening, you’re only accomplishing half of your goal. Writing down your prayers and the answers you receive will help you not only grow but to understand who you really are in Him.
3. Talk yourself happy. Don’t laugh off the idea of affirmations. Sometimes a positive word is what it takes to remain positive. When the words don’t come from someone else, say them yourself.
4. Be honest with your emotions. Quit numbing your feelings. We all have them. Allow them to be.
5. Expand your interests. Try something new. Learning a new skill, experiencing a new place, accomplishing something fantastic are all ways to develop and strengthen your confidence.
6. Be willing to surrender. Don’t just give God part of your worries and struggles. Truly release them to Him. We will never know the big picture. Only He does. Trust Him.
7. Be patient with yourself. Let go of urgency and fear. Trust in yourself and your intentions.
8. Forgive yourself. Learn from your mistakes and move forward.
9. Actively imagine what your life would look like if you believed in your worth. Focus on God’s Word and His promise for you. He has a great plan for your life. Again, trust Him.
More to think about:
- No one has to be ‘good enough’ before he/she is loved. We are loved right where we are because we belong to each other all connected through all that God is. How would understanding and trusting that you are worthy of love, mercy, and grace affect your relationship with Christ, yourself, each other?
- What feelings of unworthiness keep you from listening to what God is asking you to do?
- How can you step forward to show your trust in God?