Self-Esteem vs. Loving Others

Recently my senior pastor visited our youth ministry and taught about Self-  Esteem. From my angle the ministration was so powerful. I was personally blessed by the words of wisdom that came out of him. I was shocked when he shared the experience he had with the youth. He said: “I was invited by the youth ministry to speak on Self-Esteem! I want to admit that my self-esteem was bruised after the ministration; thank God for the youths Ministers”! Coming from a wise man I can understand that it can be very challenging for anyone to keep a good self-esteem.

Bishop Darlingston Johnson

Let me tell you a little bit about my Senior Pastor. Bishop Darlingston Johnson has been in ministry for more than 30 years. He is the overseer of Harvest Intercontinental Ministries Unlimited; formerly Bethel World Outreach. Today, more than 2000 members from over 50 countries around the world gather weekly. Through his focus on missions and church-planting initiatives, the impact of his ministry around the world led to more than 350 churches planted in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America. He has mentored several ministers of the gospel who are impacting the world today. I will therefore not expect 

Bishop Darlington Johnson, with all the experience he has, to come out with a bruised self- Esteem regardless of the reason. Unfortunately that is what many might think, but are wrong! The point I am trying to make is that discussing this topic on Self- Esteem is a great opportunity for growth to anyone regardless of age, gender, position or titles.

Last month I published a blog on Growth and relationships emphasizing the importance of relationships in our journey for growth. As I was reading through the blog, I thought it was important to pause on the topic of Self- Esteem and raise some issues to help us better thrive in life! One thing that came to mind is that 

though relationships are important and can tremendously contribute to our growth, It is necessary that everyone identifies who the master of relationships is otherwise our Self – Esteem will suffer. In fact everyone must know that God, the creator of the universe is the master of relationships. We were all created at his image therefore value relationships like he does. Sometimes we value relationships even more than we value God and end up experiencing self- Esteem issues. We value what people say about us or what they think about us.

We do a number of things and expect our relationships to praise us. Every time we find ourselves in a group setting environment, we tend to compete or do comparison. None of these has been helpful and have only contributed to bruise our self-esteem.  The truth is: not everyone will praise you; there is always going to be someone who is better than you, wiser than you, richer than you, prettier than you; therefore you are wasting your time competing or comparing to others.

One major issue my Senior pastor raised was the general understanding the majority of people have regarding self-Esteem. I got a better understanding and a refocus of my priorities in terms of how I would love to do life with my relationships going forward.

Self-Esteem VS. Christ- Esteem

First of all, self-esteem is the confidence in one’s own worth or abilities; It comes from learning to accept who we are by seeing the insufficiencies and still choosing to like ourselves. The world teaches us about self love , self confidence, self worth and everything else that is focused on self satisfaction. Whereas Christ – Esteem a term borrowed from my Senior Pastor has nothing to do with Self, but everything to do with Others.

William Booth

William Booth: “Others”

One day William Booth, the founder of Salvation Army had a scheduled meeting with his Pastors. He could not make it to the meeting and wrote a telegram that he sent to his pastors. The pastors gathered to listen to the message their leader had sent. To their surprise that message was a one word message: “Others “

William Booth is a great example of someone who understood life and dedicated it to Others. He lived a fulfilled life, helped millions of people around the world with his humanitarian vision. He began a social service network that continues today in 108 countries of the world. He is known as the man who has brought people comfort and Strength.

Mother Theresa: “Others”

Mother Teresa is the founder of Missionaries of Charity. She lived a fulfilled life while dedicating her life to others. She cared for the hungry, the naked, the homeless, the crippled, the blind, the lepers, all those people who feel unwanted, unloved, uncared for throughout society, people that have become a burden to the society and are shunned by everyone. She said:” Never be busy as not to think of others” She understood the secret to healthy self-esteem.

The Secret to Healthy Self-Esteem

Considering Others is the best recipe to boost your self-esteem. “Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2‬:‭4

The world tells you to have confidence in yourself in order to have positive or healthy self – Esteem. That recommendation has been used over decades yet we see the number of suicide and depression increase. The idea that you have to believe in you, have confidence in you for a positive self-esteem has failed many people. As a matter of fact the idea of Believing in yourself is not scriptural. The statement of loving yourself to be able to love others is not true either. Many people use the following scripture: “You shall [unselfishly] love your neighbor as yourself.’ Mark‬ ‭12‬:‭31‬ to justify why they should love themselves first before loving others. 

My Senior Pastor explained this scripture in these terms: The assumption is we already love ourselves, and because of that we should now get our minds off ourselves and consider God and others. The problem with low self-esteem is not that we don’t love ourselves; but we love ourselves too much that we want to be seen, praised, applauded, admired.

If you really love your friends, your family and other people you will not commit suicide. You will think about others, how your decision will affect them negatively. Loving yourself Too much to the point of not considering others is selfishness. 

Benefits of loving others

It feels good; you are fulfilled
• It creates a sense of belonging.
• It gives you a sense of purpose.
• A sense of creativity
• Boost your self-esteem
• Keep things in perspective
• Strengthens relationships
• Opens the door to new experiences
• Helps to refocus on the most important things in life.

Tips to boost your Christ- Esteem

⁃ Arm yourself with the truth.
⁃ Be Content
⁃ Whenever you are tempted to feel inferior know that those are lies from the devil.
⁃ Because of who God is you are already somebody.
⁃ Don’t let your happiness be tied to the things you have.
⁃ Value yourself based upon what Christ has esteemed you to be.
⁃ Because of Christ you are somebody.
⁃ Because God has made you worthy, you are somebody.
⁃ Because God values you, you have value.
⁃ Because God chose you in Christ, you are chosen.

Regardless of what I have or who I am, I know I am valuable not because of what I have done, but because of the esteem Christ has for me!

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