I’ve been hearing a lot about self-love. Is participating in self-love okay for Christians?
Well, let’s take a look!
To start, What Is Self-Love?
Many may think self-love is all about yourself. Loving yourself and putting yourself before others.
So I did some digging to find out what is self-love and should Christians be involved.
According to Brain and Behavior, self-love is the state of appreciation of oneself that supports our physical, mental, and spiritual growth.
Self-love means taking care of yourself while not sacrificing your well-being for others.
Well, we know as Christians we are to lay our lives down daily which can result in sacrificing our wants and desires for others.
Self-love can look different from person to person.
Examples of Self-Love
Talking to and about yourself in love.
Setting healthy boundaries
Being nice to yourself
Sounds pretty good, right?
According to Psychology Today, When we act in ways that expand self-love in us, we begin to accept much better our weaknesses as well as our strengths, have less need to explain away our shortcomings, have compassion for ourselves as human beings struggling to find personal meaning, are more centred in our life purpose and values, and expect living fulfillment through our own efforts.
Ok, I’m not feeling very comfortable with this…
Our weaknesses are made strong in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 12:9). And this is how we should accept our weaknesses. We don’t have to explain our shortcomings, because we rely on God’s grace.
Self-love is about having a high regard for your well-being and happiness.
Self-love is about yourself, your needs, your feelings, and your thoughts based on circumstances and situations.
I don’t think the self-love movement is for me or any Christian. As Christians, we are constantly looking to God for acceptance and not ourselves.
God created you perfectly, but not completely.
Relying on Him makes you complete.
Any “flaw” that you have is complete in Him. And He has given you the grace to overcome.
One problem with self-love is the actual word self-love. We are incapable of loving anything or anyone outside of God.
We love because God loved us first (1 John 4:19). God’s love is perfect and unchanging. Our love changes based on situations and circumstances.
This means we can love ourselves one day and hate ourselves another day based on our feelings.
As Christians, we don’t rely on feelings to indicate our love but by the Word of God. We know we are loved no matter what we feel.
What Is The Difference Between Self-love and Self-care?
There is a difference between self-love and self-care. We don’t want to get these mixed up.
Self-love is all about loving yourself unapologetically, while self-care is about caring for yourself.
Self-care can look like getting your nails done, taking a long hot bubble bath, going out for a game of basketball or golf, or eating healthy.
There is nothing wrong with these things. It is good to take care of yourself.
But self-love is the opposite of what God has told us to do.
And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” – Mark 12:30:31
So what do we do now?
Move forward, loving God first with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, then love our neighbors as ourselves.
But doing this we are fulfilling God’s command. Christians are to love themselves, but not more than their neighbors.
We are to trust God’s word which says you were fearfully and wonderfully made. (Ps. 139:14)
That says He is your strength. (Ps. 73:26)
That says if you humble yourself, He will lift you up (1 Peter 5:7)
That says you are altogether beautiful and there is no flaw in you (Song of Songs 4:7)
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Until next time, take care and God bless