It sounds like a bad infomercial, but I think we all do it sometimes. We pick out what we perceive to be our worst attributes–what we’re sure everyone else notices– and we drive ourselves crazy trying to change it, pretending to be somebody else, eating less and working out, or grumbling to ourselves discontentedly. We point our paranoia back to the day somebody said something about us, and we maybe even took it out of context or gave their opinion too much thought. To say it like that makes it sound crazy, but that is how it goes, right?–that is what we do?
There’s nothing wrong with improving yourself…after all, our bodies are a temple of God. Our actions are meant to reflect Him. So whether we eat or drink, or whatever we do, do all for the glory of God–so yeah, if we aren’t living up to that verse as Christians, then we better refocus. A little self-improvement and self-discipline may go a long way.
However, I’m not speaking about that kind of self-analysis. There’s a point we can reach where we’re discontent and unhappy with who we are. Maybe not completely discontent, but unhappy about this here or there. If you ever reach that point, and there will likely be a time, consider the following:
1) Psalm 139:13-15
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth.
God doesn’t make mistakes. He created you. He loves you. You were made in His image.
2) 2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.
Have some self-control. Discipline your thoughts.
3) 2 Corinthians 12:9
And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
You are probably not perfect–only one human has ever been. God knows your strengths and your weaknesses. Recognize that God created you to be who you are for a reason. He can use even what you perceived to be insufficient parts of you for His ultimate glory. Realize the immense amount of grace God has given you. He chose you to be His child (Ephesians 1:4-7). Be content in Him. For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus–Philippians 1:6
And if you aren’t a Christian or you don’t know where you stand before God, let me just say this, God loves you. He really does. He created you, and He longs to have a relationship with you–He cares so much. He’s all-knowing, so He understands your deepest, hidden pain, and He longs to give you confidence and joy. That’s why He went to great measures to restore your relationship with Him. He sent His son to die for you, to take all the messed up stuff we drag around in our lives, all the wrong things we’ve done that have separated us from Him. We can’t do anything to get right with God on our own–not going to church, praying, helping the elderly, or donating money to a charity. But God’s son paid our rightful debt to Him, and now, not because we’ve earned it, but because He’s loved us enough to offer us forgiveness, we can have a relationship with Him. The Bible tells us to recognize where we’ve messed up and believe that Jesus is Lord or ruler of our life, and we can have a relationship with Him. Jesus said this about having a relationship with Him, “I have come that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”–John 10:10