Self-Esteem Week Year 2: Jen

Self esteem is SUCH a huge topic! Where to start??

In my mind, one thing self esteem is strongly tied to body image. As a kid, I had a fairly high sense of self esteem but even then (from the innocent light-hearted teasing from family and from media), I was too conscious of my body image. I don't recall much but I do remember being in elementary school and loving that I rode my bike a lot because it would help me have thinner legs. Yeahhhh, I don't think that worked!

When I hit middle school, oh those were bad times. It was horrible. I hated myself and I don't know why! I hated to take pictures, I avoided looking in the mirror as much as possible, etc. I just thought I was hideous. Of course, it was one of those phases one goes through during that stage of life and along with that, I didn't feel pretty because I didn't have a boyfriend. HA, now I thank God that He's kept me from so much!

High school. It was okay! Like, I was still insecure but I was also beginning to learn to find my security in God. A lot of people bash public schools. And yeahhh, I understand why they do! But even though there were bad influences, an atmosphere is only as impressionable as you allow it to be. I had some friends from all different groups but I was never "cool". I understood that my real friends were in church and being with them was an encouragement to me.

And then there's the twenty-something years! It amazes me how much insecurity has held me back in the past from being happy to be me. Maybe it's maturity mixed with God's security that has caused me not be concerned about what others think so much. Now, I am NOT advocating going around, giving into every little whim and desire because "who cares what they think!" There's a thin line between Security and Selfishness.

We all have a God given uniqueness about us. Until we learn to embrace it and allow God to use it, we'll be on a fruitless journey of trying to be/look like someone else. Even now when I have my moments of looking at someone else's life to compare it to mine, I like to tell myself that - That's their story! You can't compare yourself to their's because God is writing Your story.

*spoken in a fake, exaggerated Texan accent* Now this here ain't yer typical self esteem scripture!!
(sorry. I'm embracing my oddness.)
But it isn't the "cliché" Psalm 139 (which I really do love to pieces!) .

This is one God showed me through a difficult time in my life. Loved it so much that I typed it and taped it inside of my Bible.

Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. (Psalm 42:5 NIV)

No matter where you are in life, look to God and put your hope in Him!


What-do-ya think?