Speak positively into people’s life. That’s what I have strived to do in my life. I would never tell someone they were worthless, ugly or incapable of doing anything right. However, I have no problem saying these things to myself.
I never really took to heart the disparity in those two ways of living my life. For an assignment I am completing, I read through all the comments posted on the blog and read the following comment from Susan Rushton (at susanrushton.net) on my post, Regret From the Worst Day.
“…if I had told this story to you, I hope you would judge me more kindly than you judge yourself”
It really made me pause and think. No, I would never judge someone as negatively as I would myself. I know this is common for many people, but I realized that I judge myself all the time. I follow the recordings in my head of those who told me I couldn’t do anything right and never found value in me. I had fallen into a learned pattern of ridiculing myself before anyone else could. Then, when someone else said something similar, it didn’t hurt so much.
It is a horrible way to live. There is no freedom in it, only condemnation. This didn’t strike me nearly as much when I first read it, but then I remembered that for the past month I have caught myself saying some really ugly things to myself – sometimes when I did something incorrectly or said something stupid, but sometimes it was for no reason at all. The horrible thought came to mind and I said it to myself.
God has been convicting me of this lately. So, evidently, God had been preparing my heart for when I re-read the comment by Susan. I realized that by telling myself I am (insert horrible comment here), I am taking away from Who God, Who loves me more than anything, says I am and I am agreeing with and reinforcing all that my abusers (who never really loved me) said I was.
How God Feels About Me
I can’t believe the insanity in this way of living. God told me to walk away from those who were abusing me to get away from the comments. I eventually did walk away, but I carry the comments with me. What makes it worse is that because different people in different voices said these words to me, the comments seemed so much louder than all that I know God says about me.
I need to stop giving credence to those words said in anger, hate and whatever else made them say the words and concentrate on what God says, the One Who created me and sent His Son, Who willingly came, to die for me:
- Psalm 139:14 – …I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
- Romans 5:8 – But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
- John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.
- Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope.
- Luke 12:6-7 – Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.
- Ephesians 2:10 – For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
- Zephaniah 3:17 – The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty One Who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing.
And the list could go on and on with all the Bible has to say about God’s feelings towards us. These are powerful statements from His Word, the Bible. They convict me and give me great pause about how I live a very contradictory life in this area. God speaks so positively into our lives, and He is the example to follow, so why am I not speaking positively into my life? If I am willing to give others the benefit of the doubt and/or want to speak positive into their lives, why am I not doing the same for myself? After all, I know my motives and know that I don’t set out to hurt people.
As a human, there are times when we all get angry and, instead of reining it in, act on the impulse and hurt the one who has hurt us. At those times, we are clearly in the wrong for our response, feel terrible and seek forgiveness and restitution. It’s not something I ever set out to do. So, why are there times when we so freely hurt ourselves without caring about the pain and damage we cause?
Take the Challenge – Speak Positively
Do you speak to yourself in this way? Can you see the harm you’re causing as I have begun to see it? I’d love to have others take the challenge to stop this way of self-talk along with me. We need to build each other up and support each other in our quests to live our lives in Truth instead of all the lies – to speak positively into our lives. I’d love to hear from you.
(I moderate comments on the site, therefore, they won’t appear immediately after posting them. Your comment will show up after it’s been approved. Thanks.)
~ Joanna Lynn