Love yourself from the inside out sounds kind of funny to say, but no piece of advice you’ll ever receive about loving YOU will ever be better. This came to me earlier today because I was taking a long look in the mirror and I had a moment that I actually embraced the fullness of how much God loves me. My whole life kinda flashed before my eyes (both good and bad) and I realized how thankful I am for my life, victories, defeats, trials, good, bad, blessings, lessons, and the process. Most of us have heard over and over that God loves us no matter what, He gave his life for us (John 3;16) but I don’t think I’m alone in the boat when I say although I heard that, it really didn’t mean that life changing “ah-ha!” like it should have. For most people, it is extremely difficult to fully comprehend an all loving creator that you can’t see when most of your life most of the experiences you’ve had paint a very different picture about the world. It can be drowning, exhausting, depressing, etc. What we forget most of the time that we as human beings are made up of 3-parts (Spirit, Soul, Body).
A lot of people leave out the Spirit part and say mind and soul which are actually the same thing. Your soul includes your mind because it’s the part of you that your memory, emotions, and free-will are. Your soul is the part of you that experiences the emotional side of your life that your physical body lives. So when your physical body’s life experiences rejection, abuse, hurts, disappointments, pains, etc. the memory of it lives in your soul (your mind). Just because something doesn’t haunt us on a daily basis anymore doesn’t mean that we’re over it. A lot of people experience things and unless you looked very closely or knew what to look for (i.e. close enough to know someone has trust issues) you’d never know that it still exists. So when we find out God loves us, that’s good news and our spirit receives it, but most of us can’t even comprehend what that even really means because our souls are busting at the seams with contrary information. What happens then is our spirit wakes up and begins to try to climb it’s way out of the quicksand of our soul. I use this analogy because this is exactly what it can feel like on the inside when you make a decision to follow Christ but there’s that “thing” that keeps blocking you from experiencing the fullness of it. (We’ll get into the “How thick is your soul’s quicksand” in another article)
We are constantly fed through media outlets “the quick fix” for just about every problem we can create. The truth of the matter is, the quick fix isn’t always the best fix. You can’t put a band-aid on a broken leg. Sometimes the real reason we can’t fully receive God’s love, is because in all honesty we have no idea what love is actually supposed to look like. The hardest person to love, is always going to be yourself. Loving yourself has nothing to do with being conceited or running around in designer shoes with a T-Shirt stating “I woke up like this”. Loving yourself is the inner sense of knowing that you are unique, precious, and irreplaceable to the creator of the universe and He wants nothing but the best for you no matter what has happened, what you’ve done, what you have accomplished, what you’ve failed at, in your brokenness, and in all your flaws He loves you. Loving yourself from the inside out encompasses everything from allowing God into the secret cracks and crevices of your soul, letting him into every memory, hurt, pain, attitude, or poor self images you have collected or been given over the years, all the way to the food you feed your body.We have been mislead thinking the answers to it all was to make it look good on the outside because that’s what everyone sees. What good does it do you to put lipstick on a pig or a fresh hair cut on a bag of rotten garbage? Isn’t it still a pig? Isn’t it still garbage?
Take sometime to really search out the things that have or still hurt you. Be honest with yourself and be honest with God. There is no problem you can bring to him that He can’t or won’t fix, but it has to start with you. When you can begin to see yourself the way God see’s you, the outside will eventually catch up to your inside. The happier you are on the inside will begin to change what’s projected outwardly.