Author: Ron Graham
How do you see yourself? Do you like what you see? I am questioning your real self image —not the one you project to others, but your own deep and private view of yourself. Is this a true self image —the one you honestly ought to have?
Forget body shape, cleverness, intelligence, career success, status symbols, romance, and all that stuff in popular psychology books. Even values such as honesty and unselfishness are not the key.
I'm talking about deeper things like an understanding of your soul’s value; the knowledge that your sins are forgiven; the assurance of a heavenly inheritance as your destiny.
The answer to these deeper questions is the same for every human being. Furthermore, most people have already answered those questions in their own hearts before they leave childhood, but have got the answers wrong, and the consequences of that are horrific.
Let's look at three ways you can, with Jesus’s help, change the wrong answers into right answers.
Nothing can be seen properly without light, and you may have been groping around in spiritual darkness without the light of Christ. Jesus is "the Word" (or Explanation) who gives us the true light about ourselves. Jesus is the image of God, and he can transform us into his image.
John 1:1-18 "In the beginning was the Word... In him was life and the life was the light of mankind... the True Light which enlightens everyone who comes into the world."
1John 5:20 "We know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding... the True God and eternal life."
Colossians 1:9-28 "Be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding... share in the inheritance of the saints in light."
It's easy to demean yourself instead of matching your self-image to the image and esteem in which God holds you. So many people feel unworthy and unfulfilled. Worse, their rightful destiny is lost.
To correct our self image, and to avoid replacing one false image with yet another illusion, we need enlightenment from Someone wonderfully wise, who knows us far better than we know ourselves. Jesus is that One.
Romans 8:16-39 "The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirits that we are the children of God... heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ... more than conquerors through him who loved us."
Colossians 3:1-16 "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things of the earth; for you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God."
When things get tough, it's easy to complain and say, “Why me?” You have to understand; that the road to your rightful destiny is tough; it may traverse much painful tribulation. At the hard road’s end, however, is uttermost joy. The alternative is unimaginable pain and desolation.
Matthew 7:14 "The gate is small and the way narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it."
Acts 14:22 "Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God."
Romans 8:18 "The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be..."
2Corinthians 4:1-18 ¶ "Though our outer person is decaying, yet our inward person is being renewed daily."
Romans 6:3-14 "We too might walk in newness of life... if we have become united with him..."
There is no doubt that you can achieve God’s purpose for you —to be his heir and inherit eternal life in his heavenly city. When you accept your place as God’s heir child, no enemy can force you to stray from The Way.
God sets his seal upon his children, and ensures that they are not tempted beyond what they can bear.
Ephesians 1:13-14 "Having believed in [Jesus Christ] you were sealed in him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance..."
1Corinthians 10:12-13 ¶ "No temptation has come over you that is not common to man. God is faithful, who will not permit you to be tempted beyond what you are able to bear. Rather, when you are tempted, God will provide the way of escape so that you may be able to endure the trial."
Which one of the list below represents a true self-image?