Jesus was asked by one of the teachers of the law, what is the greatest of God’s commandments? Jesus did not give the answer he was probably looking for, Jesus gave two new commandments. Jesus said in Mark 12:30-31 (NIV); “Love the Lord your God with all heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: love your neighbor as yourself.” There may be some of us who look at this and think I need to love others as I love myself but that is no favor to them. There have been times in my life I have not loved myself at all. I have felt guilty, shameful, and have felt lower than dirt. Loving others was easier than loving myself.
As I have matured as a Christian I have learned what it means to love myself. I have learned how much God loves me and that he has even loved me before I was born. God sent his own son, Jesus to die for us. John 3:16 (NIV) says; for God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. God loves me that much. Psalms 139:13 (NIV) says: “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.” God knit me together in my mother’s womb. I am a creation of God knitted together not mass produced. God knitted me and you together with love and care with each stitch.
God has loved me before I was born; he created me with care and love. We were stitched together with our own personalities, gifts and talents. We were created to bring God glory. God loves us so much he sent his only son so we could have eternal life. God sent his own son to pay our sin debt because he wants to spend eternity with us. God loves us so much. I have to look within my own heart to see what it is God loves so much. In this way I have matured and learned to love the personality, gifts and talents God has given me. In bringing him glory I learn to love myself. I look to Jesus and how he loved us and I am now learning to love others as he loves us. I am also learning to love myself as Jesus and my heavenly father love me. My relationship with God has really brought great love to Him, others and even myself. Love has grown as I mature.