One of my gifts is encouragement. God has blessed me to see the good in everything and everyone. If you need a positive word, I’m your girl…about you. For some reason I just can’t seem to find much positive in myself. What is that?! I’ve talked to complete strangers, people in jail, people who’ve committed bad offenses and had no trouble finding kind and soothing words for them. When I mess up or present myself as less than perfect I have no mercy for me.

The Bible says to “love your neighbor as yourself”. What if you don’t love you? I’ve asked that question for years and have never gotten an answer. How can you love others if you don’t love yourself. Here’s how I process all that.

I give to others what I’d like to have.  Kindness, consideration, respect as a person. I’ve given coats, money, and myself because if I were in the situations I’ve witnessed I hope someone would do the same for me. I really try to treat others as I would like to be treated. I’ve put myself behind those I love in order to see to their needs just because it was the right thing to do. Sometimes I found myself used, lied to and manipulated and my feelings were hurt afterward but at the end of it, I had peace and can say I would do it again.

Love is rewarding and after all isn’t that the point? My perspective is that when you give your best to someone who’s hurting or needing you’re giving the best of yourself which is ultimate love. Our society says to do what we do for ourselves; Christianity says to do what we do for others. Polar opposites. Which is more rewarding and allows us to live with our choices more peacefully?

So wait. Maybe I’m not so bad to myself. Maybe I bless myself more than I think I do because lifting others up, making their day brighter and seeing them smile on their difficult journey is fulfilling and rewarding. Hmmm. Maybe I’m not as messed up as I sometimes think I am!


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