Be So Darn Good...
I love reading. It’s not a secret, but I just thought that you ought to know that I LOVE READING! It’s pretty sad the number of books I have acquired in my lifetime. You know what? I should probably start a book club on this blog because I’m always reading something. Food for thought 🧠🤔.
Recently, I’ve been reading How to Be a Bawse by Lilly Singh which I without a doubt recommend to everyone! I don’t know what you’re facing, but this book should be on your get ‘back to you’ list. The topics Lily shares in her book are either lesson I’ve learned in my adulthood or lessons I’m currently learning. One specific lesson I'm learning (maybe re-learning, to be honest) is learning to love all of who I am.
Typically, I’m the person who tries to find the best in all people even before they open their mouths. People have always fascinated me. People's ability to be positive and bright is what drives me to continue meeting new people. However, I’ve come to realize that the hardest person for me to accept their light and who the person indeed is…is me.
I have probably battled with loving myself for as long as I could comprehend the English language. Yet after all these years, I finally realize that the love and the relationship I have from within myself is just as important as the relationship we have with God. The relationship we have within ourselves is as important as the relationships we have with our family, friends, and significant others. After realizing this, it dawned on me that I need to get to know Abigail. It’s time for me to love on Abigail. It’s time for me make Abigail a priority.
I have realized that the ultimate goal God has for me ties in really well with this whole self-love topic. We all love to recite Jeremiah 29:11 like there is no tomorrow. If there was ever a verse aside from John 3:16 that is more prominent in the Christian community, I think it would be Jeremiah 29:11. But if I could take this step a little further. I know that God states throughout the Scriptures all the different things that are His will for us in different scenarios. Though, when it really comes down to it, what is God’s will for all of His children? (I don’t know if I’m 100% correct on this one, but hey God speaks to all of us differently.)
God recently placed 1 Peter 2:15 in my heart and I think maybe just maybe it’s the best way to explain how this self-love and Jesus thing go hand in hand.
For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves. Honor everyone. Love the brothers and sisters. Fear God. Honor the emperor.
-1 Peter 2:15 - 17
Sometimes when I read the Bible, and I feel like it’s literally telling me “well duh!” I mean look at people: it is God’s will and following it is…doing good, Doing good guys! Then Peter goes on to explain what it means to do right by giving us the proper instructions.
Respect all people. No matter what relationship you have or don’t have with each person you encounter, respect all who come your way.
This means honoring yourself too! I neglected to grasp this part of the text: everyone means yourself included. We tend to pour so much love into others that we forget that the love that is poured in us is meant to remind us to love ourselves. Honor everyone (believers, non-believers, and yourself).
Love your brothers and sisters:
I have come to realize that as people we tend to allow our difference deteriorate the relationships we have with each other. God has repeated it throughout the Bible that it is his will and command for us to love each other. This means loving on those who are and aren’t Christians. We have to live in love by accepting and caring for those who don’t think like us. This doesn’t mean we have to compromise who we are but that those who have a strong foundation (being Jesus) cannot be waivered by just expressing their love to others. As followers of Christ, you and I have no excuse to not love on others.
When I was younger, I used to get confused with the whole fear God thing. I asked my mother one day why the Bible is telling me he afraid of God. She explained that it’s not really the type of fear we are familiar with but in the original translation, the Scriptures are telling us to respect God. Just as we spoke about honoring everyone, we have to honor God. This means making time for God in our daily schedules. We must discipline ourselves to be able to worship God throughout our day. When you respect someone, you care for them. When you realize what Jesus did for you and me, you have nothing but love and respect for him. We show that we fear God in our time management, how we treat others, how we love the world that he has given us, and how we obey with compassion and correction.
There are many ways to keep ourselves in the will of God but loving those who aren’t believers, honoring one another, and respecting the people and the world we live in are great places to start. We tend to focus on the negative in life because negativity isn’t healthy for us. Humans want love, it’s a part of who we are. But we forget that instead of trying to correct what is going on externally, we have to focus on what is going on internally. We must learn to treasure the relationships we have beginning with the ones we have with God and within ourselves.
Loving myself is a commandment in my book. The more I choose to love myself, the more I’m able to love those around me because I’m allowing the blessing that has been poured into me to multiple. I want to challenge you to give someone something positive daily. Whether it’s a quick text, phone call, or a card that just states how much you care and value that person, just do it (don’t get mad at me Nike). Don’t stop there. I want to challenge you also to give yourself something positive each day. It can be making extra time in your schedule for you so you can do something that pours into you or looking in the mirror and telling yourself that you are worthy (Jesus thought so). Do good for others. Do good for Jesus. Do good for yourself.
Until next time…