40 DAYS OF ABUNDANT LIVING – DEVELOPING A HEALTHY SELF-IMAGE
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.” - Psalms 139:14
By most standards, Carly should not have made it. Overweight, with one leg slightly shorter than the other as the result of a childhood accident, Carly was the lone woman employed in a largely male dominated field. She had to earn her right to be heard nearly every day. Some people laughed at her appearance or her halting walk; some made snide remarks behind her back, some were inconsiderate to her face, but Carly paid little attention. She knew who she was, and she knew she was good at what she did, so when other people attempted to put her down, she regarded them as having the problem. "Emotionally challenged," she often quipped about her detractors.
Despite the factors working against her, Carly continued to receive one promotion after another, eventually becoming the CEO of her company and a highly-sought-after expert in her field. How did she do it?
Carly's secret is her incredibly positive self-image. A devout Christian, Carly believes that she has been made in the image of God, and that He gives her life intrinsic value. She doesn't strive for the approval of other people or depend on compliments from her superiors or peers to feel good about herself. Bright, friendly, articulate, and extremely competent at her work, Carly goes through life with a smile. While others shake their heads in amazement at her attitude, Carly is living abundantly!
The second step to abundant living is to develop a healthy self-image. You must see yourself the way God sees you and what the word of God says you are – healthy, strong, favored, blessed, precious, prosperous, etc. How you see yourself and how you feel about yourself will have a tremendous impact on how far you go in life and whether or not you fulfill your destiny. The truth is, you will never rise above the image you have of yourself in your own mind. The bible says that you are created in the image of God. You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Your self-esteem is deep feeling you have about yourself. It's how you regard yourself, your opinion or judgment of your own value, the extent to which you think you matter in life. On the other hand, your self-image is like a self-portrait; it is who and what you picture yourself to be.
A healthy self-image is one of the key factors in the success and happiness of any individual. You will speak, act, and react as the person you think you are. Psychologists have proved that you will most consistently perform in a manner that is in harmony with the image you have of yourself.
Your self-image is like the governor that controls your actions and performance. It functions like a thermostat. It regulates your actions and behavior to ensure that you perform within the boundaries of the picture you have of yourself.
During the next few days we will share with you five principles of how you can develop a healthy self-image. They are:
1. Seeing yourself in light of God’s word.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:10)
2. Understanding your value
“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26)
3. Aligning your belief
“Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” (Mark 9:23)
4. Developing a prosperous mind-set
“No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.” (Romans 8:37)
5. And appreciating yourself
“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.” (Ephesians 1:4-5)
Rev. Obadiah Swen
Application and Prayer for Today
1. Reflect on what do you think about yourself. Eph. 1:3
2. Reflect on what the word of God says you are – holy, blessed, favored, victorious, prosperous, child of God, etc.
3. Pray that the word of God will transform your mind so that you may know the good, accepted and perfect will of God. Rom. 12:1-2