Friday, October 19, 2012

Rotten, Nasty Fruit! Would you like some?

Have you ever regretted exploding in anger?  Did you feel terrible afterwards?  Boy, I sure have here lately and I get upset at myself for doing it. 

I think about the Fruits of The Spirit and then think to myself, “Wow, I’m failing here in some of these. I don’t want rotten fruit. Nobody enjoys it, I don’t enjoy it, and I KNOW God doesn’t like it. That’s what I’m forcing others to partake of , rotten fruit!” Who wants that?! Every harsh word is like throwing it at them and saying, “Here, take that!  I don’t care if you want it or not, you’re getting it!” Where’s the gentleness?  The self-control?  That kind of attitude doesn’t have much patience or kindness.  And it doesn’t matter if the reason I’m coming unglued is because I’m tired, in pain, stressed, frustrated, or have lack of sleep.  Rotten fruit is just rotten fruit and nobody desires it.  It doesn’t look good, it smells bad, and let’s face it….it looks really nasty.

 Look at Galatians 5:22-23  New Living Translation (NLT)

       22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

The leader of the Online Bible Study, Melissa Taylor, asked us to blog about how we are applying the message of the Unglued book by Lisa TerKeurst to our personal lives. Ok, well here it is.  I call it my Jesus Glue!  It's what holds me together.

My Personal Jesus Glue

1.      I spend more time in the Word of God to position my heart to flow in God’s       power and love, His divine nature

2.      In moments of frustration, I pause instead of reacting in anger

3.      Communicate my expectations with gentleness

4.      Feelings indicate where my heart is for the moment, not dictating how I behave

5.      Have a default “button,” have a plan how to respond appropriately 

6.      Remember “I am a child of God, holy, dearly loved, set apart for a mighty plan

7.      When I don’t know what to do, speak the name, “Jesus.”  He calms my heart because I invite Him to be with me and allow His power to work in the situation and being obedient to His will

8.      Give thanks to the Lord, His love endures FOREVER

9.      Act in kindness, it ministers peace to others

Awe, now that tastes MUCH better.  What a wonderful, sweet taste.  Can you taste it too? The fruits of the Spirit should have a nice aroma, a desired taste, and look beautiful.  It is the main ingredient of Jesus Glue.  Without it, we fall apart.  Our testimonies, are damaged.  Relationships, broken. 

Plsam 34:8  Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Them's Figh-en Words! Are you beating yourself up?

Negative self talk is so destructive!  A dear friend of mine described it like this, “Words” are still a very powerful and sometimes destructive force. Negative words are like unguided missiles…aiming to destroy, and if not stopped they will complete the mission! They are the tools of the devil…seeking to steal, kill, and destroy.”

Do you really know how powerful your words are?  When you say something to yourself, your brain receives it as truth.  If somebody called you dumb, fat, ugly, stupid, would you get upset?  It would be hurtful and could be depressing because it attacks your self worth.  Some of us would get really angry and might just have to do something about it!  In the south, you might hear, “Them’s figh-en words!”  

So why do we get ourselves upset and angry by saying the same things?  “I’m such an idiot.”   “I can’t believe I did that, I’m having a stupid moment.”  “Man, I hate the way I look.  God gave my sister the pretty genes.”  “I just wish I was never born!  I hate my life.”  We experience the same emotions regardless if somebody else says it to us or we say these things to ourselves.  Make an effort to stop beating yourself up and start visualizing what you want to be.  Let me tell you, you’ll have more motivation to do something about the changes you want, that’s for sure.

I shared in my last post that I am a small group leader for an Online Bible Study group. The book for these 6 weeks is titled, Unglued by Lysa Terkeurst.  I love the visual she gives of us being like a slab of marble.  God chisels away what we don’t need and artistically brings forth the beauty He sees. A beautiful sculpture made in His image.  With our negative self talk and negative belief of who we are, we stay trapped in that slab with all our raw emotions and never breaking free from it.  Will you choose today to let God do His work in you?  Will you let Him break away the labels you’ve placed on yourself and be set free?  John 8:36 “So if the Son has set you free, you are free indeed.

Remember this always, that the moment Jesus died on the cross, He established your worth FOREVER.  He believed YOU were worth dying for!  John 15:13  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

I know that we discussed this topic in April in greater detail but I just felt I needed to share the spin that Lysa had.  It gave me such a great visual and blessed my heart so much, I felt you would be equally as blessed.  We will begin the topic of boundaries later in November when I finish the unglued study.  For now, I will be sharing from this book through the end of October. I hope you don’t mind the delay.  Love you all and look forward to seeing you back soon.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Where's This Coming From?

     So where does all these low self worth feelings come from?  I know that most of us have some clue but do we really know the depth of it?  Why is it still affecting us today? 

     Low self worth is a belief we have about ourselves and it is seeded in our hearts and minds as we are grow up. It becomes the root of how we feel about ourselves today. First, we get positive or negative messages from our parents or authority figures that are most important to us.  Did you know that parenting styles can have a huge impact on how you perceive yourself? And when I mention parent, I am speaking of anybody that spent anytime raising you. We know that our upbringing affects us but sometimes don't realize the impact it has on how we feel about ourselves and how we matter. For instance, if you had a parent that was overly protective, it would make you feel like you were inadequate.  Parents who are overly critical will make you feel unacceptable and that you can’t do anything right.  Ok, who had parents that were really passive, overly permissive? These are the parents that want to be your friend more than set boundaries, rules, and consequences for you.  Do what you want as long as it makes you happy.  Did you know that this kind of parenting will send messages that you are not valued?  And how about the over controlling parent?  Your young inner voice will interpret that you are incompetent which can make you feel that you are weak and insignificant.  There are so many more details to parenting styles and how they affect children as they are growing that I can’t write it all here.  I encourage you to do Google the type of parenting you received and read up on how it truly affected your thinking and beliefs about yourself.

     Did you grow up with parents that had addictions of substance abuse, workaholics, an over spender, or compulsive behaviors?  All of these situations would have made you feel that these things were more important than you.  When you were born, you had the need to feel loved, that you mattered, and to feel secure and protected.  When any or all of these aren’t met, you would develop negative self perceptions of yourself.  The messages that your little heart would embrace would be that you had no value, you didn’t matter.

     Abuse and neglect are so damaging to a child and can take years to overcome the emotional affects of it.  But God is so faithful and has an unconditional love that surpasses our understanding and it gives such healing and acceptance like no man on this earth can ever give.  "O Sovereign LORD!.  You have made the heavens and earth by Your great power.  Nothing is too hard for You!" (Jeremiah 32:17)

      If you were indeed neglegted, emotionally, physically, or sexually abused by a parent or authority figure, you may adopt the beliefs that you are a nobody and/or deserving of the demeaning words you hear. You might feel like being mistreated is or verbally abused is just a part of your life and you have to take it.  Maybe you even felt like it was your fault that these things were happening to you.  “If I had only done this instead or said this.”  Or maybe you asked, “What am I  doing that makes them treat me this way?  What can I do differently the next time?”  Maybe you’ve thought, “Well, I deserved it.  I should have (fill in the blank), then this wouldn’t have happened.”  Do not ever take ownership of what somebody chose to do to you.  I dealt with this for many years.  “If I hadn’t have skipped school and hung out with so and so to play around with drugs, I would have never been raped.”  The impact of that belief made a difficult life for me plagued with bad choices just to feel loved and not like damaged goods.  I didn’t think things through but instead, had to have that instant gratification of acceptance and love.

      My daughter is 25 years old, the mother of two, and was molested by her biological father at a young age.  She became very fearful of him at age 3 which led to the discovery of the abuse. Being molested gives a sense of shame and a sense of no value. She doesn’t have custody of either child because of her destructive behaviors and dangerous choices that stems from the molestation.  Her stepfather and I have been raising our granddaughter who is now 14 months old and have had full custody for over a year.  Let me tell you, it has been a very painful road for my daughter as well as for us.  She has been in and out of counseling for years but this last counselor was just amazing and very informative.  Do you know how sad it was to come to the realization that our daughter was not even capable of making safe decisions for herself or her children? When the counselor told us that, my heart was heavy but it helped make sense of all that was happening.  With work and help from the Lord, she could overcome this but she just runs from it when she makes any kind of progress.  She acknowledges that she never adopted her own set of values and standards and because of that, she can’t say no when she needs to say no.  She will adopt other people’s standards high or low for just a season, live by them while she is with that group at all cost to be accepted.  And I do mean at ALL cost.  If you or somebody you know lives destructively because of sexual abuse, I recommend a wonderful book that will help with understanding and healing.  “The Wounded Heart: Hope for Adult Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse”  Author Dan B. Allender.  The book is under $10 at and is available as digital download.

     I encourage you today to understand just how  loved you are by our Heavenly Father.  He accepts you just as you are and where you are.  He tells us in Zephaniah 3:17 "The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will rejoice over you with loud singing."

     Our self worth starts at home.  It is not my purpose to blame parenting but to enlighten us to observe the type of parenting we had to better understand possible roots of low self worth. Were we abused in anyway, were we neglected because a substance, work, or an object or place seemed to be more important than us?  Our sense of worth spills over into our adolescence and adult hood and negative self perception grows. Our negative self talk grows.  We can compare ourselves to others because we don’t feel like we measure up.  Your self worth is not based on how others see you.  It is not based on how many people like you or is your friend on social networking. Nor is it how much you can do for others.  It is based on the belief you have about yourself. 

     If you have negative beliefs, you can change them. If your parents/ authority figures were hard to please then say, “My value is not based on making others happy or how much I can please them.”  For the overly protective parent/ authority figure, say, “My worth is not based on how well I protect myself.”  If your parents/ authority figure were over controlling, they didn’t allow you to make many decisions. Say this, “My worth is not based making my own decisions.”  Overly passive or permissive parenting do not set boundaries so say to yourself, “My worth is not based on if I can make boundaries for myself or not.”  For any of these issues, you can change them.  It is a behavior based on a belief you have, not your true value.  Be encouraged that your past does not define who you are today or ever.  If you change the belief, you can change your emotion attached to it, and then change any negative behaviors you want to change.  If you are living and breathing today, you can start making a change today. 
Isaiah 61:7      
"Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy."
Next blog topic:  Setting Healthy Boundaries; Teach people how to treat you in a healthy way.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

So What's The Difference?

      Can you think of times that you have felt rejected?  It can be very painful and difficult to heal from because it attacks your self worth and esteem.  Don’t get the two words confused here.  Low self worth and low self esteem are two different definitions and it’s important to understand the difference.  Low self worth has to do with believing we have little to no value.  We have a tendency to compare ourselves to others or to feel that we aren’t worthy or deserving of certain things or relationships in life.  Low self esteem is how we regard ourselves or place our value and is momentary, short lived.  It’s the amount of value you grant yourself.  If you have good self esteem, you may hear something that will bring you down for a moment but it doesn’t affect your core belief of yourself.  For instance, somebody gets a promotion that you were seeking.  It is a blow to your confidence and esteem for that moment but it doesn’t shake how you feel about yourself.  You still believe in your strengths and who you are as a person.  The kick to your esteem just pushes you to improve.  A person with low self esteem will allow it to affect how they perceive themselves and make comparisons in an unhealthy way.  The kick to their esteem adds to their feelings of little to no value, uselessness, and their imperfections which can lead to depression, low self worth.  We feel insignificant, the need for approval,

     Here’s a self inventory for you.  Answer these questions as honestly as you can.  Remember, I’m not there to judge you and nobody else can hear your thoughts.  This is your private time to really dig deep and answer to the truth about yourself and not how you think you should answer.

Ø  Do you find yourself to be timid, shy, or even fearfully so?

Ø  Do you give into other people too easily?

Ø  Are you sensitive and get your feelings hurt easily?

Ø  Do you have overly aggressive attitudes?

Ø  Do you have fits or rages?

Ø  Have others described you as having attitude problems?

Ø  Are you a perfectionist?

Ø  Are you self critical?

Ø  Do you have a fear of failure and avoid risks?

Ø  Don’t set healthy boundaries

Ø  Neglect yourself

Ø  Do you always feel like you’re the victim in situations

Ø  Do other people’s opinions matter more than yours

Ø  Do you always try to fit in

Ø  Do you overly criticize people or yourself

Ø  Demanding

Ø  Find it hard to forgive

Ø  Rebellious to authority

Ø  Defensive

Ø  Do compliments make you uncomfortable

Ø  Do you blame others for things you have done wrong

Ø  Is it hard to get close to people and bond with them

Ø  Are you afraid to defend yourself

Ø  Do you compare yourself to others

I pray that you have learned more about the differences between low self worth and low self esteem.  Self worth is how we feel valued and esteem is how we place value.   The next time you find yourself in a situation when either is challenged, take a mental note of how it affected you.  Did you bounce back and strive to make improvements or did it hold you back and cause you to question if you mattered or if  you were good enough.  God wants us to walk in peace and to have a good self image of ourselves.  After all, we were created in His image and He is just amazing!

Here's a beautiful scripture you can use as a prayer while you’re searching your heart for the changes that you desire in your life.

“Show me your ways, Oh Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for You are God my savior and my hope is in You all day long.”  Psalm 25:4-5

Next week: Where does low self worth come from?

Friday, June 15, 2012

Thank God for My Poopy Day!

       Replacing our negative thoughts can sometimes be challenging to our low self worth issues.  No matter how hard we try to reason differently, sometimes we seem to react or respond with the same negative behaviors because of hurt or pain.  Why? 

     I will never forget the feeling of abandonment when I was about 4 or 5 years old.  My mother and father got into an argument and my mother left the house and walked in the back yard near a red clay field getting further from us and the house.  My dad sat my two older sisters and I on the back porch and told us , “Stay right here.”  We were all crying and upset because we were convinced she was leaving us!As I got older, I didn’t realize how much this situation played a part in my low self worth issues.  Why is it that I could reason as an adult that everything was ok, she didn’t leave, and that she was just letting off steam but yet it still contributed to my self worth issues?  I had realized how those feelings affected my marriage and other relationships in a negative way.  If my husband and I would have an argument, my first fear was that he was going to leave me and the marriage was going to be over.  Why did my mind interpret such an extreme result from a disagreement?  We were never malicious with one another and in fact, we always argued fairly with the goal to have more understanding for the other person’s perception and to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.  So why in the world would I always equate arguments with abandonment? 

I asked my counselor,  “Why am I doing this?  I can reason in my mind the truth of the matter.  Mom was just venting and cooling down.”

She responded, “Did she come back?”


“Did your dad or your mom hug you and tell you that everything was going to be ok?”

“No, dad just told us to come inside that everything is ok and to go to bed.”

“They didn’t hold you and say that?” 


   She explained to me that our hearts hold on to the first belief and files it away as the truth.  The heart and mind are separate.  The heart deals with the emotions and our mind reasons and thinks. We can reason all day long but until we replace the file in the heart, it will not be resolved. It takes a hug to sync the brain and the heart so that the old file can be replaced with the truth.  How many times as kids or adults did you misunderstand something and it hurt your feelings but when you received a hug and word of comfort, it changed everything?  How about when a child is scared of the Boogie Man that’s hiding in the closet?  What is the first instinct as the parent?  Open the door and show them that there is no Boogie Man and hold the child and tell them, “See?  Everything is going to be ok.  No Boogies.  I’m right here and nothing bad is going to happen to you.  Ok?”  In that moment, we erase the belief and replace it with the truth.  What would happen if you just said, “There is no Boogie Man, go to sleep!”  Would that help the situation or upset the child more?  It would definitely escalate in to a rough night for the both of you because you have not taken away that child’s fear.  Until you prove to them that there really is no Boogie Man hiding in the closet, they are still going to be affected by their belief.

   Mom didn’t leave, she loved us, and she was not ever leaving us.  But my heart held on to that belief, I’m not lovable enough or worth loving. I never received help to change my belief.  In fact, our dad told us it was ok and to go on to bed.  This was equivalent to believing that the Boogie Man was still in my closet! 

    I was encouraged by my counselor to speak to my mom about it or to picture the event in my mind with it ending with a comforting hug from mom and hearing her say, “Everything is ok.  Mommy is not going anywhere.  It’s ok.”  That seemed to help a little.  But I was still having issues of abandonment.

    God had a plan in motion.   A week or so later, I made a trip to S.C.  to visit my parents with my two little dogs and our infant grand-daughter whom we had just been awarded full custody.  She was only a couple of months old and I was losing lots of sleep.  My parents had a brand new laminate wood floor installed.  One of the dog’s tummy was messed up and would make it to the puppy pad but miss.   The baby was having a poopy kind of day too!  Oh goodness, my day was full of stress over poop!  At my breaking point, the baby had it coming out of her diaper and getting on to everything then the instant I cleaned her up, the dog made another mess!  My mom looked at me and KNEW I was going to cry.  She compassionately came over to me and held me and said, “It’s going to be ok.  It’s alright.  Don’t worry about this, ok?  It’s going to be ok.  I love you.”  She had no idea that I had been dealing with the abandonment issues, yet her warm hug and comforting words were timely. God used that poopy day to replace the abandonment file I had stored in my heart for so many years.  In that very moment, my heart and mind connected through the hug because I was remembering the little girl on the porch that needed the reassurance that everything was ok.

  I thank God for my stressful, poopy day. You never know what He will use to get your attention or help you heal.  So look for opportunities to make a change.

 "Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with loving kindness I have drawn you.”   Jerimiah 31:3  NKJV

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Rejection Cycle

      This week, we are going to learn how rejection issues create more rejection.  First, I'd like to share an embarrassing story.  It was a pivotal moment in my life when I realized that I needed a serious change. 

      Fourteen years ago, my husband, Michael and I were still dating.  Since I was new to the area, he and our good friends wanted me to go to a family style restaurant that they really enjoyed.  We ordered two meats, a few sides, and some wonderful buttermilk biscuits.  The waiter brought out big bowls and platters for us to pass around like we do at our family table.  Michael and the friends took a bite of the mashed potatoes, their eyes rolled back in the heads as they enjoyed the flavor, and went on and on about how awesome the potatoes were.  Michael, with his mouth watering and clearly in love with the potatoes said, "Oh my goodness, these are the BEST potatoes ever!" I thought to myself, "How can he say that?  He hasn't tried mine."  I actually felt angry because of what he said but I tried to hide my feelings so I just looked down at my plate.  Then my friends chimed in,  "I know!  These people make the best mashed potatoes than anybody! Nobody can touch them!"  I felt my heart beat faster and no matter how hard I tried to not say what I was thinking, my mouth opened, I snarled my nose,  and out burst my jealous words, "They're not all THAT great!  Mine are way better."  I was so jealous of those stupid white potatoes. And I have never forgotten the looks I received either.  They looked at me with shock and disbelief.   Oh my goodness, I felt so embarrassed that I could lose control like that but I couldn't shake the feeling of jealousy and anger. 

     Why would I react that way?  Why would I say such a thing to my friends? How could I be jealous over a bowl of potatoes?  Did it just happen out of the blue?  No. That reaction had been building up for some time because of the repeated rejection I had felt through the years. In my first post, Did That Really Happen, I shared with you that as a little girl, age 8, I believed that I was not wanted, loved, and in the way.  I felt like I was just a problem that my parents HAD to deal with. I felt a strong sense of rejection.  The reason I reacted so badly in the restaurant is because my self worth and acceptance was based on how well I could do things which is known as performance based acceptance.    I instantly felt like I was being compared which was not the case.  It was just my mind interpreting things incorrectly because of my low self worth.

   Negative behaviors can create more rejection.  How do we define rejection? What is it to reject someone? According to it is;

    §  To refuse to accept, acknowledge, use, believe, etc
                  §  To throw out as useless or worthless; discard
                  §  Something rejected as imperfect, unsatisfactory, or useless
   Oh goodness!  They just described how I felt for years!  I know that you think of times that you have felt rejected.  We have all felt rejection.  Jesus felt rejected through his ministry and on the cross.  It can be very painful and difficult for us to heal from because it attacks our self worth and esteem. 
    Rejection becomes a nasty little cycle that repeats itself over and over and we are left with feeling more hurt and more pain.  Remember that low self worth comes from repeated rejection.  Let’s look at this cycle.  (This is from June Hunt’s, How To Handle Your Emotions) :

Triggers feelings of worthlessness

Brings feelings of self hate

Self Hate
Despise yourself, produces negative behaviors

Negative Behaviors
Reproduces rejection

    In that restaurant, I was feeling worthless and felt that I was being compared to another person.  It was only my imagination.  In my first post, I shared with you how our minds automatically interpret what we hear, see, smell, etc., then we put meaning to it, then an emotion follows.  That's exactly what I did because of my low self worth. Do you see how the cycle fits here?  My mind interpreted that my friends were comparing me to somebody else and that I didn't measured up, then I felt that I wasn't good enough, worthless.  Then the jealousy and ugly behavior manifested.

     Think of other behaviors that bring about more rejection.  Some people are known as the  show off, the liar, the Mr. know it all, the overly sensitive person that gets offended easily or cries easily, the hothead, the overly competitive person, the person who doesn't respect boundaries, got to have it my way person, the person afraid to trust, the party animal, the blame game person, the bragger, the loner, the recluse, the workaholic,  etc.  There are so many negative behaviors, I can't list them all here.  For now, think hard about how you react to situations and if there are any negative behaviors that you need to work on.  Then ask yourself where it is coming from.  What is it in your past that is holding on to your heart? What are your hot buttons, your sensitive areas, or your triggers? There has to be a change if you want the bad feelings and behaviors to stop. They add stress and pressure or even hurt feelings to those who spend time with you. People will begin to avoid the stress, pressure, and hurt feelings thus causing you more hurt and pain because they are also avoiding you or reacting to you. You will feel rejected and it cycles until you make it stop. Let me tell you, the behavior will manifest itself when you least expect it.  No matter how hard you try to control it, it will present itself and there will be no taking it back.  Once it's out there, it's just there and you aren't the only one who is affected.  It's time to make changes and break the cycle.  Are you ready?

   My next post will give tools to help make the changes you desire.  If you feel that someone you know could benefit from these posts, please share this blog with them.  Until next week, I leave you with these scripture refrences for encouragement.

"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared before hand, that we should walk in them."  ~Ephesians 2:10~

"Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come."  ~2nd Corinthians 5:17~

Friday, May 4, 2012

God's Image or Yours?


     We are continuing our look at low self worth this week. If you are a new reader, you will benefit a lot from this post but I encourage you to read the last post titled,  What's Behind Your Mask  to identify even more negative behaviors and hidden issues. Just click on the blue title to go directly to the page.  Did you answer the questions to see if you have any hidden low self worth in my last blog?  It’s surprising, isn’t it?  Oh but wait, we have more questions.  I know, I know, and you thought we were done.   Below are some questions from the author, June Hunt, that I believe will be helpful.  Some of the questions have been revised.  Don’t answer according to how you know you should be or wished you could be but instead, answer truthfully and honestly.  Nobody’s listening to your thoughts or your heart but you and God.  

     Inner Insecurities
Ø  I am self-critical and have feelings of self-loathing
Ø  I am fearful of failure and avoid risk-taking
Ø  I am overly affected by the opinions of others and strive to meet their standards
Ø  I am undeserving of and yet desperate for the approval of others
Ø  I am unhappy with my appearance and achievements
Ø  I am negligent of my appearance
Ø  I am unable to set appropriated boundaries
Ø  I am ashamed of my background which causes me to struggle with depression
Ø  I am controlled by a victim mentality
Ø  I am inferior and feel incompetent when compared to others

Relational Roadblocks
Ø  I am overly critical and distrustful of others 
Ø  I am demanding and unforgiving of others
Ø  I am defensive when confronted
Ø  I am argumentative and resistant to authority
Ø  I am undeserving of /or unable to accept compliments
Ø  I am afraid to get close to people and establish intimacy
Ø  I am a peace-at-all-costs people pleaser
Ø  I am reluctant to express my true feelings
Ø  I am hesitant to accept responsibility for my wrongs
Ø  I am often afraid to defend myself
      Did you answer yes to any of these?  If so, then you have rejection and low self worth issues.  Even if you hear yourself saying, “I’m just a little like that,” the problem is still there.  How would you react to a fly, roach, or hair in your food?  They are small problems but I’m sure you would do what it takes to correct the situation, wouldn’t you?  So then, I encourage you to approach this the same way.  Even if you feel that you do one or some of these on a small scale, it needs to be handled so a positive change can occur. Be very honest with yourself. 
      For most of my life, I sought after the approval of others and discovered that I was a really big people pleaser.  I didn’t know that it was from low self worth.  I had a fly in my food and didn’t see him there.   I thought that I was just a giving, compassionate person, and that I loved to help others.  The reality of it all was that I needed that pat on the back and to hear, “Good job” so that I would feel needed, wanted, validated, and that I mattered.  Another problem I had is I was overly sensitive and would get my feelings hurt easily and would get angry at the person who hurt me.  I hated feeling that way, especially being so sensitive, argumentative, and defensive. Why couldn’t I just feel settled in my own skin?  Not only did it steal peace from my heart, I was seeing the negative affects it had in my relationships with others.  God didn’t create me to be this way and something had to change.  It’s so hard to listen to people excuse their behaviors by saying, “Well, I can’t help it, that’s just the way I am.”  What about this one, “I’m a red head, I can’t help it,” or “I’m Italian, that’s just the way we are.”  Or to hear, “Don’t get mad at me, God made me this way!”  No He didn’t. Don’t buy into this lie and accept it.  If you do, you can’t change it because you are training your mind to accept it and therefore, will not feel the need for change.  Think about this, He created us in His image.  So does your image line up with God’s image? 

Genesis  5:1 ~ This is the written account of Adam's line. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God.

     What is the likeness, image of God?  God is a just and loving God.  The Bible tells us that God is Love.  First Corinthians Chapter 13 is known as the love chapter and I like to use it as self inventory to see if I am living my life as a loving person which helps me to single out any negative behaviors that need attention.  What is love?  According to verses 4-8, Love is patient, kind, doesn’t’ boast and is not proud, doesn’t dishonor others, is not selfish, not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.

   I always share a tool with you so that you can begin to make the changes you desire. This week’s tool is geared toward helping you investigate your thinking and to compare your behaviors to the Word of God.  Make a note where you fall short and prepare your heart to be open for change by acknowledging that there is a problem, a fly in your food.  Maybe you have a lot of flies or some flies are bigger than others.  Don’t accept any negative behaviors as being normal and the way you were made but understand that life’s challenges, circumstances, and your environment have sculpted you into the image you are today.  Any negative input has stolen any parts of God’s image from you and taken your peace of mind and your heart with it.  Strive to learn about who He is, His attributes and take back what was stolen.  Reclaim what God created in you before your first breath was taken after you entered this world!  Accept nothing less than how He truly created you and then, only then, will you begin to experience more peace and settle in your heart your acceptance and worth.  Whose image do you desire most, God's image or yours?

   Next week, we will look at rejection and how it can become a cycle of more rejection.  Low self worth and rejection work together against us.  In the next few blogs, we will continue to learn  how to recognize  signs that we have  self worth issues and feelings of rejection to deal with and gain control over them through acknowledgement then healing can occur.  I leave you this week with this scripture about peace in our hearts:

Colossians 3:15  ~ Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts since as members of one body you were called to peace.  And be thankful.