Speaking the Truth in Love:
We often determine our self-esteem by the way others esteem us. To make it worse, we look to the airbrushed, facelifted, overly spun pop culture to create the standards for us! No wonder we struggle with self-esteem! The truth is, God esteems us through Jesus, who loved us enough to sacrifice himself for us.
Daily Prayer: Thank you for making me who I am. Give me humility to serve others with the gifts you have given me. Amen.
Monday, September 21
Recall the story of Joseph, especially Genesis 37, Genesis 40 and Genesis 50:19. Joseph had every reason to think highly of himself as the favored son. What happened to his status and his self-esteem? Whose esteem did Joseph seek instead? Describe a time when you were humbled and God used the situation to do something remarkable.
Tuesday, September 22
Read Isaiah 53. Isaiah saw a vision of a suffering servant. We know that was Jesus. What did others think of this suffering servant? Even yet, what did he accomplish for them? What truth did the suffering servant bring? How did he show love, regardless of the attitudes of others?
Wednesday, September 23
Read Ephesians 2:1-10. The desperate searching for self-esteem reveals our deep inner knowledge that we are not good enough unto ourselves. We don’t reach society’s standards, nor the standards of God. What is the remedy for this situation? Where is truth and love in that remedy?
Thursday, September 24
Read Matthew 5:1-11. The world encourages us to be rich in sprit, not poor, to ignore the bad, not to mourn it, to be boastful and proud, not meek. Is Jesus encouraging us to have low self-esteem? Look at the second half of each “blessing.” What is God doing as we humble ourselves?
Friday, September 25
Read Matthew 16:21-28. Peter had plenty of self-esteem. So much so, that he felt it his duty to keep Jesus from making a mistake. When does your pride get the best of you? Recall a time when you were able to serve someone because you denied yourself.
Saturday, September 26
Read Romans 12. What problems occur in the “body of Christ” when each of us thinks of themselves “more highly” than we ought? What does Paul encourage us to do from our lowly position?
Bethel Lutheran Church, St. Paul, MN – bethelstpaul.com