Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Restoring Confidence and Self Esteem
This is who you are, your identity, LOVED BY GOD. ~ Eugene Peterson
After a relationship breakup a common question in going from a couple to a single is “Who am I now?” You want to know if you are loveable, worthy, enough. How do you find your way forward on your own?
Breakups can affect your self esteem and your identity. When you look at yourself, you may have a clear picture or a distorted image—either way it’s your point of view.
So often a woman looks to a man to affirm her worth and value. If he thinks she is great, she feels great. If doesn’t, her worth withers. We are sorely deceived when we think that any man has the final answer to our significance.
“No man can tell you who you are as a woman. No man is the verdict on your soul,” said John and Stasi Eldredge in Captivating. “Only God can tell you who you are. Only God can speak the answer you need to hear.”
To be sure, the authors affirm that it’s normal in a loving relationship to speak well of each other. It’s important to affirm each other with words. However, they conclude, our “core validation, our primary validation has to come from God.”
With the yardstick the world uses, you may feel like you will never measure up. However, when God looks at your life, He sees something entirely different—and His point of view is authenticity, reality, truth.
But what does God have to say about who you are? In His eyes, you are:
A child of God—an adopted son or daughter.
Princess or prince.
You are precious, honored, and highly valued.
You are the apple of His eye (someone who is held dear).
You are chosen.
You are accepted by God…you belong to Him… and you are loved with an everlasting love.
Once you’ve discovered your true identity, who you are in God’s eyes, and choose to live in that truth you will begin to see yourself in a whole new light. You reawaken to who you really are—chosen, accepted and dearly loved—and find the courage to be yourself.
When your identity is rooted and ground in what God says about you, your self esteem is more solid. You are better able to handle success or failure, deal with change, make decisions, and move forward to give and receive real and lasting love.
The Lord wants to transform your identity, not take away who you are, but to reveal who you really are. No longer a servant, you are a friend. No longer an orphan, you are a child of God. Instead of a pauper, a princess; instead of alone and unloved, a Bride.
Don’t let your pain or your past define you. It is a part of who you are, but it’s not the entirety of what makes you the unique individual you are. Who you once were, or who you are now can be transformed as your identity comes from your security in Christ.
Jackie M. Johnson is an author and freelance writer in Colorado. Her hope-filled and encouraging books include "Power Prayers for Women," "When Love Ends and the Ice Cream Carton Is Empty" and "Powerful Prayers for Challenging Times." Jackie also writes the Living Single blog on Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk website.