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A High Self-Esteem Can Cause Insecurity!

January 16, 2013

anxious-kids-dealing-with-an-insecure-teen_NewsletterHow shocked would you be if I told you that having a high ‘self-esteem’ could actually cause you to be more insecure than having no ‘self-esteem’?

Well shocked or no shocked, I genuinely believe this to be the case.

Today we are constantly bombarded with messages that encourage us to have a high self-esteem; we are instructed to focus on all our strengths, to only refer to our weakness as ‘opportunities for development’. Whatever happens, so we are told, we absolutely cannot consider ourselves as anything less than awesome!

I’m not 100% convinced that this way of thinking is good for us.

Now as I say this I am aware that there are a lot of people who are victim to abuse, and for these people it seems like a bit more ‘self-esteem’ is exactly what they need to survive, but it isn’t.

I believe there is a difference between self-esteem and self-worth

Now this might seem obvious to most, but to have self-esteem, is nothing more than to esteem yourself. In other words to hold yourself in high regard.

Put bluntly, self-esteem is rebranded pride. It’s to put yourself up on a pedestal, to convince yourself that you are amazing, and that you don’t need anyone else, all you need comes from within. The problem is we are taught to base this self esteem on ourselves, on things like our characteristics, or talents and abilities.

“Don’t feel bad about yourself, after all, you’re really quite creative”

“Don’t beat yourself up, look how talented you are, look at how much you can contribute to society.”

But what happens if the creative person, for whatever reason, is no longer able to be creative? What happens if the talented person, for whatever reason, can no longer contribute towards society?

If our sense of value comes only from that which gives us ‘self-esteem’, then if that which gives us self-esteem is taken away, then so is our sense of value!

is-your-house-built-on-a-solid-foundationSurely we need something more concrete in our lives, something that will hold steadfast, even when we let ourselves down. If I pin my self-worth on all that I can achieve then I will forever feel insecure and unvalued.

Amazingly I actually think it’s possible to have NO SELF-ESTEEM and yet the HIGHEST sense of self-worth possible!! ‘How?’ I hear you ask??

7006710-united-kingdom--circa-1989-an-english-used-first-class-postage-stamp-showing-portrait-of-queen-elizaBy surveying the wondrous cross of Jesus Christ.

How good would you feel about yourself if I told you that I would gladly lay my life down to keep you safe? Probably pretty good I’d imagine. Well how good would you feel about yourself if I told you that the Queen of England would gladly lay her life down to keep you safe? Surely you’d feel far better! (Neither of these are true I’m afraid!)

The feeling of self-worth surely rises and falls with the significance of the person who truly values you for who you are.

At the cross of Christ we see the most graphic and scandalous demonstration of love ever. The creator God came to our world in flesh, and lay down His holy life, shedding His precious blood – to keep you safe.

“Hands that flung stars into space, to cruel nails surrendered.”

The cross of Christ actually banishes any sense of ‘self-esteem’.

It’s at the cross that I see how depraved I am. So sinful and pitiful, that my punishment was death. But equally at the cross I see how loved and valued I am. So cherished and adored, that Christ died in my place.

Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” John 3:16-17

You see no self esteem needed here, I am overwhelmed with a stronger, more steady sense of self worth.

One Comment
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