Just In Case No One Told You…
My heart breaks when I encounter people in life who I know for sure are settling. Time and time again I see women who want to be wives turn into “baby mamas”, men who want to be husbands end up as serial daters failing to commit, people who have big dreams settling for a regular 9-5 and more. But why? Because the trajectory of our lives is built around the level of our understanding of our identity in Christ and then our ability to translate that identity into a healthy sense of self-worth.
Self-worth is the value we ascribe to ourselves, ultimately meaning how you think of yourself. And whether you know it or not, you’re displaying your self-worth everyday to the people around you and confirming it by what you’re willing to accept. I can see the low self-worth in the revealing pictures of women seeking validation from peers that they are indeed beautiful. I can see it in the jumping from bad relationship to bad relationship not believing that God will bless you with someone that loves and honors you. I can see it in the quest to gain ‘likes’ and ‘followers’ to tell you that your thoughts, opinions and life experiences matter. You can’t mask this level of identity crisis, in fact your cover up techniques only amplify it.
I’ve heard a lot recently about this ideology that we tend to attract the things, people, and opportunities that we feel we deserve and I wanted to write a quick blog about it because I believe that it’s pretty true for the most part. A skewed self-image will cause you to do one of two things:
1) Reject the blessings that come to you because you think everything is too good to be true
2) Accept less than what you want because you believe that is what you deserve
I can recognize these things because at one point it was my story. I wrote a little bit in my book about how I wasn’t often celebrated for who I was growing up. I was shy and quiet so people constantly told me that I needed to be something/someone else and it wore heavily on my beliefs about myself. I’m so passionate about healing this epidemic of people who don’t realize their worth in Christ because I know it is through this understanding I have been able to step away from friendships with people who used me, end a relationship with someone that didn’t honor me, and even leave a job because they were devaluing my skills and talents and I knew I didn’t have to dumb myself down for a dollar. I know what I will accept and won’t accept and I can confidently draw the boundaries around my life because discovering my identity in Christ solidified my self-worth.
Sometimes we are blocking our own blessings. Not by being disobedient or sinning, but simply because deep down we feel we don’t deserve them. We should always remain humble, but false humility will hinder you from achieving anything great in life. I know what I’m worthy of, not because I worked so hard and did so well, but simply through the grace of Jesus. I couldn’t earn salvation but he freely gave it to me, and since He did, who am I to go back and say what I don’t deserve? Why would I accept an average, mediocre, regular life? God offered me what He valued most when I didn’t even know I needed it, what else would He not give me?
He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? – Romans 8:32 (NKJV)
If you’re wondering why you keep ending up in less than desirable relationships and situations or why you don’t currently attract the people and opportunities you know are God’s best for you, perhaps it’s a deeper issue that’s rooted in a distorted self-identity. We can’t keep blaming everyone else for our mistreatment and misfortune, it’s time to look in the mirror. Do you honor yourself? Do you respect yourself? Do you love yourself? The answers to these questions are drawing the boundaries around your life and you will, without a shadow of a doubt, continue to experience what you feel you deserve.
I want to encourage all my readers to search the Scriptures to see what God says about you and focus on really believing those things are true. Once you believe it, your expectations will rise and everything in your life will rise to the level at which you’ve set your standard. Low standards are indicative of a low self-worth and all of it leads to a low experience of life. Understanding God’s love for me was what really changed my life and I attribute the self-worth I found in knowing Christ to the completely new mindset that I operate with now.
I know all of this sounds good but honestly, it’s natural to want someone outside of yourself to affirm you. Not that you live off of it but that it feels good for others to acknowledge and uplift you. I didn’t always have that, but I know the difference it can make to have someone in your life to do that for you.
So, just in case no one told you…
You are loved.
You are worthy.
You are valuable.
You are irreplaceable.
And you deserve the best in every area of your life. Not because of anything you’ve done, but just because God loves you. Never settle.