Loving God and Loving Others.
“Love your neighbor, as yourself.” Matthew 22:39
Yesterday we looked at Loving God on our 31 Days of Loving God and Loving Others series. Today, we’re peering into what it means to love others.
It sounds simple enough, doesn’t it??
But, there’s so many paths we can take with this one.
- Who is our neighbor?
- What does it mean to love your neighbor “as yourself?”
- How do we do this?
Before our 31 days are over, we’ll be touching on all of these. But before we can go any further, I believe we need to pause right here,
and take a slight detour on this journey.
Before we can begin to love others, we must first love ourselves.
Period. End of story.
If we don’t love who we are, how can we possibly love someone else??
Now, I’m not talking about an unhealthy, egotistical, self-centered kind of loving ourselves. I’m ashamed to admit, I lived for numerous years in that kind of awful perception of loving self. It was ugly and appalling. How did I have any friends??
Loving ourselves is having a healthy perspective of who we are. Embracing our true self, not necessarily in our eyes, but who we are in God’s eyes.
We are unique, special, one-of-a-kind. He created us extraordinary, not ordinary.
He created with special gifts and talents, to use for His glory and to bless others.
There is not one other person on this planet like you or like me.
As we talked about in yesterday’s post, we are loved by the One Who created us.
God wants us to love who we are. He wants us to appreciate how He made us. To glorify Him in loving everything about us. God creates beauty. Not junk.
Friend, you’re beautiful.
God wants you to see yourself as He sees you.
Beautiful. Wonderful. Amazing. Special. Awesome. Stunning. Unique. Rare. Loved.
I can’t make you love yourself. That’s something only you can do. I want nothing more for you today.
What’s one thing you can appreciate about yourself this very moment? What is something that makes you special? What personal, non-physical attribute makes you thankful?
I’ll start. I appreciate how God made me a morning person. I like the dimples He gave me. And, I’m thankful for the gifts and talents He’s blessed me with, such as writing and singing.
Now it’s you’re turn. You’re not bragging. You’re just loving who God created you to be.
And that’s a beautiful, God-glorifying thing!
Beautiful and loved. That’s you!
(Normally on Fridays you find here my Five Minute Friday post. In October, those have moved over to my Live Laugh Linger blog. Enjoy that joy-filled place over there, too.)
Sharing this with the community over at Counting My Blessings.
Day 3 of #31DaysLovingGodLovingOthers. Tomorrow we’ll come off the detour and take a look at Loving Others.
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Julie, this is a wonderful post. So many deep, truthful statements. In the last year, I have just begun believing such good things like you listed can really apply to me. I have found out that, yes, I am worthy of God’s love and grace. So, to answer your questions: I appreciate that I am willing to listen and learn new things. I am special because I have a kind, gentle spirit. And I am thankful that I am a contemplative person. Oh my, tears. Feeling emotion is one of those new things in my life. Thank you for your beautiful words of encouragement!
Kim, thank you for sharing here today. I am thankful you have come to the truth you are worthy of God’s love and grace. You are more than worthy, friend. Those are some great reasons to celebrate who you are! Your words are evident of your kind and gentle spirit. God has certainly gifted you! Tears are a blessing. I’m so glad you were encouraged today. God bless you!
Julie, I love that you pointed us to loving ourselves the way God made us and sees us. it takes the “ego” out of it and enables us to love others the way He created and sees them. Thanks so much for linking this at CMB.
Yes, Deb! You’re leading us right into tomorrow’s post. 🙂 Thank you for hosting the link! It’s a gift to be a part of what’s going on over at your place. God is being glorified! Have a great weekend!
Hey Julie! I have just jumped in to connect with 31 Dayers for encouragement. Thank you for this message. I so need it. I don’t know why it is easy to encourage others and I never give myself a break. Thank you for the encouragement! Hope to visit everyday if possible. Many Blessings! Cathy
Hey Cathy! Welcome! Glad you’re here! Yes, we need to give ourselves grace and a break. Too often we don’t. God bless you today and in the week ahead!
Amen, and amen! Its a simple matter of thinking about how we treat others…(usually pretty nicely), and answering the question, “Would you put down your friend the way you’re putting down yourself?” “Would you say what you just said about yourself about a friend?” So often we don’t realize that our lack of self-love comes from repeating the evil one’s negative thoughts about ourselves (therapists call it ‘negative self-talk’).
Such wisdom, Anita. So often we speak to ourselves in ways we would never speak to a friend. Thank you for sharing this! I see a blog post in there! It’s a joy to have you here! Hope your weekend has been blessed!
Thank you for your encouraging post! Yes, we can have (and should have) a healthy love and respect for ourselves when we know who we are in Christ. Being conformed into the image of Christ (Christlikeness) makes us more and more beautiful. I am thankful that God has given me a childlike faith, a joyous personality, and an overflowing love for Him and for others.
Thank you for stopping by today! Knowing who we are and Whose we are makes all the difference, doesn’t it? I’m thankful God has blessed you with those specific things, too! What precious gifts! Thank you so much for sharing here. Have a blessed week!
Interesting. One of my recent posts was about seeing ourselves as God sees us. I like the idea of naming off attributes that we are thankful for. God gave them to us and they are His creation! I am thankful for my youthful skin, even thought it means acne still at 42! :0)
Hi Jolene! What a gift to see your beautiful face (with your youthful skin!) here today! Youthful skin is a great thing to be thankful for! So glad you shared that here! God sees us in a much better light than we see ourselves. It’s good to appreciate how He made us. Hope you’re having a great week, friend!