The cure for self-worth and self-esteem is not found in a magic pill or in six easy steps, but there is one. As someone who generally struggles with self-image I at least know that there is a cure. I have seen the cure but still find it hard to believe that it can cure me. I go through days of feeling insignificant, unworthy and all out worthless; and if I am honest, I feel when everything is going to go wrong, deep down inside it is going to be my fault.
For a long time I looked through the lenses that showed everyone better than me; that nothing in me is set apart and that I am not special in anyway. I have scoured the internet looking for cures to my poor self-image but none of them work. I have also looked for something to fill the emptiness: drugs, sex, porn, video games, you name it… nothing helps. To be honest, I don’t tell you what I struggle with because it makes me feel better, but because it doesn’t. I tell you them because I want you to know that I am there as well. Notice I didn’t say I have been there; this is not my past, it is my current life. This is my struggle, this is my daily life and honestly, it does feel good to say it out loud just once: I Feel Worthless….
As I look back through my life I find that I have felt this way for a long time. I have struggled with suicide because “what is the point of being around?” I have consistently felt like I have been held back or I am holding myself back because if I really show who I am to the people around me they would leave. If you feel the way that I do at all, this is a very lonely place to be. A place full of self-torture, and self-hatred, and most people don’t even come close to understanding the constant battle that you face in just putting the fake persona on and telling everyone everything is ok.
“I just received it as a gift, like a child at Christmas.”
But I know there is a cure and I know that the cure is not instant and I will have a better self-image, and I will no longer hold my-self back; no more self-hatred and no more worthlessness. There was one moment in my life where my self-esteem was high. I didn’t hold myself back, and I jumped into every situation with a confidence that I didn’t know I had. For the first time I was happy, I had joy that was never ending and I could not stop from smiling. I found the cure! It was not in me, and it is not a complicated program. For the most part I did nothing. I just received it as a gift and like a child at Christmas, I unwrapped that gift so fast. It was the best time of my life.
You see, I had a friend and he invited me to Church and was faithful in making sure his mom picked me up every Sunday so that I could go with him. God started to change me, and it started with the little things. On one occasion I was reading the Bible before school, then I decided to watch TV, and the exact same thing I had just read was playing on TV. God didn’t stop there. He continually showed Himself real to me over and over again until I could not ignore it any longer.
“I woke up everyday expecting God to do something and I looked for it…”
Soon I realized that He wanted me to do something with my feelings of self-hatred, worthlessness, and insignificance. He showed me how to give it away but not just to anyone; to Him. Every one of the disciples felt insignificant next to Jesus; that is why Peter denied Him; why Judas betrayed Him and why Thomas needed proof. It is why Saul killed Christ-followers then met Jesus on a road and changed his name to Paul.
But as I get older I have found that the joy is gone; the self-hatred and worthlessness have come back. What is the point in saying that there is a cure if you are not fully cured? I did something when I had joy and when I felt happy and when I knew that I was significant. I woke up every day expecting God to do something and I looked for it; I looked for opportunities to see Him in action and hoped I could be a part of it.
The cure is simple and hard at the same time; you need to give yourself to a God who loves you and finds you very worthy. He finds you very significant and He would do everything to let you know that. He wants to give you rest from your self-torture and replace it with joy that passes all of your understanding; joy that might even bring you peace. The hard part is just releasing your self-image and feelings of insignificance, because it has become your security blanket and you can only have one. Either Jesus becomes your security or your insignificance does. That’s the cure and that’s the choice, and it is yours.
“Jesus wants your self-hatred… your entirely messed-up view of yourself and your life.”
You might not be able to receive this right now but you need to know this: You are loved. You are beautiful. You are not worthless. Whether you know it or not, you are missed, you are appreciated, and you are significant.
There is someone who loved you enough to die for you. He would do it for you if you were the only person on the planet. He finds you worthy of His love, worthy of His affection, worthy to know that even though He created everything around you, everything you see and breathe, that He will still prove to you that He loves you. Jesus wants your self-hatred, your unworthiness, your self-doubt, your suicidal thoughts, your entirely messed-up view of yourself and your life. He wants to replace it with what you need; peace, love, kindness, gentleness, self-control, and to show you that you are worth His life. The cure is giving it all to Jesus and receiving His image of you in return. Remembering to do it daily is the hard part.
Pray this with me:
Jesus here I am, here’s all of me. Take me, please. I don’t want to be this way anymore. I am tired of hating myself and blaming myself for everything. I am tired of feeling insignificant, worthless. I give you my life, my emotions, my mind; please help me. Show me who you are, show yourself real to me. Give me little miracles that remind me that you have me in your arms. Give my mind and heart peace and rest. Jesus, I need joy. Please replace insignificance with joy that passes my understanding. Joy that brings me peace. Be the light that shines deep down in my heart that will never be extinguished, the light that reminds me that I am significant to you, my creator. I invite you to come into my life. I long for a relationship with a God who loves me. Amen.
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