Last week I taught a Bible study on self-esteem. Then a few nights ago I was standing next to my daughter (who came to the class) when a friend of mine came up to me and said, How did your Bible study go Wednesday night?
Do you know what I did?
Feelings of insecurity rose up within me, and I said, Um, well, I guess it was okay. Then I turned to my daughter and said, What did you think? Did you think it was okay?
For Pete’s sake.
It was then that I realized having a low self-esteem is a habit.
I’m so used to looking for the approval of other people to know if I’m okay, even though I have learned from Paul that I must remove myself from that human court (more on that another day.) It’s hard to change ingrained ways of thinking.
So I’m mentally role-playing through that conversation again.
My friend says, So, how did your Bible study go Wednesday night?
And I say, Well, I think I have some growth to do in my teaching skills, but I faithfully shared what God had put on my heart from His word, so that was valuable.
Phew. This is going to be hard.
Paul says, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Romans 12:2 NIV)
Self-esteem is a pattern we slip into, and that pattern of choice results in either good feelings or bad feelings.
What is the pattern of this world? It is generally to be either self-loathing or full of self. To be anything else requires a completely new way of thinking. And changing our thought patterns requires a disciplined habit of going to the Bible for truth, memorizing it, and practicing it in the moment. Rinse. Repeat.
Hard work plus the power of God.
What is your habit of dealing with yourself?