Eden Lost is a land of pendulum swings. I’ll say this for us, we’ve got extremes down. Paradox and living with tension, we’ve still got a ways to go.
Self-esteem is one such casualty. Having been ignored or undervalued, parts of society have gone to the other extreme and over value every little utterance or achievement. The graduation gown industry in China is one of the healthier parts of the economy if last June was any indication.
Warning: rant part of the post. Doesn’t graduation lose its meaning if every little step is called “graduation” and is celebrated like the person has walked on the moon?! Hello, it’s not that impressive to graduate from pre-school, it’s kind of a given. End of rant.
But in Eden Lost it’s easy to throw the baby out with bath water and in response to the over praising for relatively small accomplishments, forget that esteem is important. Esteem is another way of saying respect. So, self-esteem, in essence is of a form self-respect.
If your child, your nieces and nephews, your young neighbors don’t have self-esteem, what are they left with? The enemy will come in and take that which was their God given state as an image bearer and leave them with self-loathing, embarrassment and shame.
And self-loathing, embarrassment and shame breed their own paths of destruction from starving to cutting to numbing to over-eating to pornography … and on and on.
In Eden we were people of esteem. We are the pinnacle of creation and the delight of a loving Father.
Remember that someday we will see ourselves as we truly were meant to be. And shame and self-loathing will melt away as we stand before a mirror and see two faces. Ours front and center and behind us, the face of a loving heavenly parent saying “Look at my child!”
All the posts in the series will be added to this page each day of October. If you would like to receive these reminders in your email inbox, it’s easy! You can subscribe now by entering your email where it says “Jump into the Mess!” Hard to believe we are near end of our reminders! Amy
Remember:Love, satisfaction, extravagance, freedom, belonging, recreation, truth, trust, purity, submission and power, unity, kindness, blameless, with abandon, acceptance, celebration, faith, generosity, joy, purpose, empathy, rhythms, hope, elation, esteem. (Yup, still have the formatting problem :))
David Rupert says
haha … loved your observation of “Graduation” for kindergartners etc.
I’m not sure we have an esteem problem in this world. Just ask, and you’ll find that just about everyone thinks they’re above average. We smarter, better drivers,and nice than average — but the truth of the matter is quite different. Yes, Eden will set straight everything and correct every bad perception.
Well, I know that I’m many of those things you mentioned :). The problem is, as you said, many of us think this way. Just this weekend raking leaves with my sisters I was reminded of a study where in a marriage each partner thought they were doing MORE of the work. Obviously, they couldn’t be. But it points to perception and the reminder that I’m not doing as much as I might think, nor others as little. And thankfully my sisters are good rakers.
CQ MB says
i like your point about esteem: “The enemy will come in and take that which was their God given state as an image bearer and leave them with self-loathing, embarrassment and shame. And self-loathing, embarrassment and shame breed their own paths of destruction…” My heart for my students is that my classroom would be a place where they are challenged to work hard but that if they make a mistake it doesnt reflect on their character… that its a safe place to make mistakes and to grow. That’s how our Father is with us.
Really enjoying your 31 days of Eden!
MB, what a beautiful fragrance is in your class (and more than a few laughs!). Wish I could pop in this fall!
For some reason this one is so difficult for me. I can’t seem to get a balance. One one hand there’s Pride. Don’t thing more highly of yourself than you ought. On the other hand there’s the fact that we are image bearers. In class this week with the boys we read about how we are not worthy of what God has done, yet neither or we worthless. We were purchased with the precious blood of Christ! Talk about valuable. Oh, the subtly of lies and the limits of my mind and heart to discern them at times.