The following is an excerpt from my upcoming book, Overcomer:
Although I knew that I should demonstrate humility in my life, my attempts to be humble had often become destructive because I lost focus of who I was in Christ. My focus was centered on how horrible my past actions were, how much weight I had gained after marriage, and what a disappointment I must be as a Christian. In my quest to be humble, I believed that speaking negatively of myself was essential, and I did not realize that I was placing more focus on myself rather than on Christ.
Christ in You, the Hope of Glory
Colossians 3:27 states the following: “To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Christ is in me, and Christ is in you if you have accepted Him as Savior. He is the hope of glory. Do you realize what that truly means? I no longer need to focus on how horrible I think I am, or how badly I have failed. I can repent of my sins and get up out of the mud in which I fell so I can continue the journey.
While it is necessary to have godly sorrow to bring repentance, self-loathing does not bring the necessary change. Intimacy with Christ does. The fact is we all sin and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23), and our righteousness is as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6) yet we have a righteousness imputed to us by Jesus Christ. This righteousness comes from His work on the cross. All of my self-condemnation and self-loathing does nothing to bring victory over sin. Trusting in Christ and allowing the Holy Spirit to live through me brings victory.
Jesus Brings Healing
There are people who come to the place of hating themselves and even harming themselves with tactics such as cutting, eating disorders, and other punishments. The sad truth is there were some very painful circumstances that got them to self-abuse. If you are one of those who harm yourself because of inner turmoil that has stemmed from the abuse and harm someone else brought to you, know that there is healing in Jesus Christ. Know that you do not have to be stuck in that vicious cycle. Know that Jesus longs to bring a healing balm to the wounds placed on you by others, and yes, even yourself.
If you have been the victim of any type of abuse, seek godly counsel through a pastor, trusted church leader, or Christian counselor. God has people placed in certain avenues to bring help to you. I encourage you to seek that help.
Even if you just have a negative self-image by nature and no one has necessarily contributed to your demise, Jesus longs to set you free. You need to know who you are in Him.
You are righteous in the sight of God because of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21).
You no longer stand condemned because You are in Christ (Romans 8:1).
You are forgiven, adopted, chosen, and redeemed (Ephesians 1: 4-7).
God rejoices over you with singing (Zephaniah 3:17).
You are beautiful to Him (Psalm 45:11).
You have reason to rejoice. God does not hate you, and He is patient when you are surrendering to Him. Emotional healing is a process.
In the upcoming chapters, we will deal with sin as we must, but it is imperative that you know who you are in Christ so that you do not resort to self-loathing when dealing with sin. We are free from the condemnation of it, but we have to allow God to refine and renew us.