Pastor, give yourself the gift of self-acceptance!
No, self-acceptance does not mean copping out to avoid personal development or addressing sins. Rather, true self-acceptance (made possible by receiving God’s grace and full acceptance) powerfully liberates us from our past mistakes, perceived failures and flaws, and drive to prove ourselves.
Here are powerful benefits you gain by accepting and approving yourself. You gain ability to:
* examine your strengths and weakness and set a plan for growth
* let go of past mistakes and failures
* listen to others with less defensiveness
* develop transparency and openness with others
* experience a sense of peace
* maintain a sense of humor when encountering difficulties
You also reduce:
* your need to prove something to yourself and others
* your susceptibility to burnout
I recall that powerful moment in my own life when I suddenly realized, ‘God is fully pleased with me right now”.
That moment liberated me!
I no longer needed to work to gain acceptance. I was free. Free to accept myself as I was – imperfect –yet standing in His righteousness, fully accepted and fully loved. I had no need to prove anything to God or to myself.
I was free to grow, to become the person he created me to be. Unique, imperfect, with emotional struggles, weaknesses, and a past. Yet with a calling, an anointing, and the security of knowing I am His daughter.
When we don’t accept ourselves, we continuously attempt to prove something – to others, to God, but mostly to ourselves. We must achieve success because failure proves that we are flawed, deficient, unacceptable.
And that creates a big problem: the unending, crushing burden of continuously proving something wears us down and leaves us vulnerable to burnout and needless emotional turmoil. It actually interferes with effective ministry and a happy life.
You may ask, "Dr. Jeannie, that sounds great but how do I do it?"
My next post will answer your question in detail. However, for now, let me ask you this question: have you truly accepted yourself?