Why It's Important To Love Yourself

Author: Tim Ahlman
It's important to love yourself. But it's weird for Christians. Aren't we supposed to deny ourselves, pick up our cross, and follow Jesus?

Yes, we are. Yet, denial of self cannot fully begin until we understand how much we're each loved by God.

Baptism is God's love letter to us, "You are mine. Satan, nor the world, claims you. I do. And I'm not letting go."

Our new identity in Christ increases our self-worth, not diminish it. You were worth dying for. You're highly favored by God. If you were the only human on planet earth, Jesus would have died for you.

Our culture is going through a major identity crisis. Especially our youth. We're all asking two key questions:

  1. Who am I? What is my true identity? Am I defined by what I do, how I look, or what others think of me?
  2. Why am I? What is my purpose? Why was I put on planet earth? What happens when I compare or compete and come up short?

God's Word answers both of these questions.

  1. Who are you? You are loved. You are a loved child of God. By faith in Jesus the Father is pleased with you. He rejoices and sings over you. Love yourself in light of the Father's eternal approval of you.

2. Why do you exist? What is your purpose? You are sent. You are sent by the Holy Spirit into the world with your unique gifts to bring the love of Jesus to those walking in the darkness of unbelief. Love yourself in light of the Spirit's sending of you into the world.

Knowing your identity (loved) and purpose (sent) changes everything; you don't have to win love and approval. You have it from God. You don't have to find your meaning. You are sent by God.

One final word. I am not pretending this is easy to live out. We need people to remind us to love ourselves in light of God's love for us. This is the power of small groups and Christian community.

Satan will try to steal your self love. He's concerned that when you truly grasp how valuable you are that you'll want to share that value with others. Shame, guilt, and a misunderstanding of our true identity in Christ keep us focused on self. Tell Satan to get behind you. He has no power over you. You are the Lord's.

Love yourself in light of eternity. It is truly the only way to deeply love others.
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