My Fitness

Friday, August 30, 2013

self-esteem (life under control week 6 day 1)

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. (Romans 12:3 ESV)

Looking at the above verse one might jump to the conclusion that he should think lowly of himself. But "sober judgment" does not mean to lie to yourself about your worth. But also don't think that you are greater than you are. I've often come across some of the most arrogant Christians who are at the same time the most insecure Christians. Their confusion can be remedied by first finding their identity in Christ (for the insecurity), next by actually loving others (for the arrogance), and finally by evaluating themselves honestly (for balance). If you don't know how to evaluate yourself honestly ask your siblings.

In Romans 12:2, the previous verse to the one listed above, the author encourages us to not be conformed to the image of the world. The idea that these verses are next to each other implies that the world often thinks of itself more highly than it should. Look at Hollywood or Congress. It's embarrassing that these fellow Americans parade themselves around as our representatives thinking that they have all the answers all while neglecting Christ and the only reason worth living. Don't conform yourself to them.

What does Hollywood think? Hollywood tells us that beauty defines you and tells you what beauty is. Beauty itself is deceptive. But Hollywood Beauty is the most deceptive of all. And what of popularity? and sex? and "finding oneself"? and getting all the right toys? Hollywood is shallow and quickly drained of any value.

And what of Congress, Senate, and the rest of the political realm? Do you have enough power? Do you have enough money? Morals don't matter as long as a Lobbyist is lining your coat pockets. These men and women disregard their own Maker not realizing that all power comes from him. They will be held accountable for every decision even if they die before that day.

This is the world. Shallow celebrities and corrupt government. Why imitate them when you could pick up your cross and die daily to follow the difficult path Christ has walked first? Obviously, the wide road is easier. It might be "glorious" as much as the world can offer in the field of glory. No one wants to have to pick up their cross, implying they carry their death around with them. But it is a death to slavery and to sin; a death to a separation form God. No one want to die daily! That's crazy! Until you realize Christ already died for you and your daily death is a death to what separates you from him; reforming you into his image, daily. The road is narrow and while the yoke is easy in the sense that it is simple it is difficult to overcome sin and be victorious. But God will never ask us to do something that through his strength we are unable to achieve. Christ's blood paves the way to our freedom, we must only walk in his footsteps.

If we can remember Christ's sacrifice for each of us, individually, that should keep arrogance far from us. If you still struggle with pride, then you might not fully understand what Christ did and said. It's funny how many Seminary Professors I have met that were the most humble and sweet men. But the exact opposite would be said of their middle-aged pupils! How strange! The men who knew the most were humble enough to admit it was only by God's grace and the pupils who knew significantly less were always strutting their feathers attempting to foolishly show off how much they know. This must be what we look like on a Divine scale! So don't be arrogant.

I grew up with the idea that "being humble" meant denying your strengths and talents. I was told that you should never have to say what you're good at, that others should be able to know without you telling them. But that is simply not what humility is. If someone asks, "Are you good at This?" You are allowed to evaluate yourself and give an honest opinion. I've messed up so many opportunities by saying, "oh I'll let you decide for yourself." Because I was taught to be that way. Being humble doesn't mean you don't take pride in your work or children's accomplishments. Being humble is simply and only acknowledging the source of your achievement. "By the grace of God, yes I am good at that."

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