God’s design for us as godly women is that we are first to have utmost reverence for Him as LORD of our lives and as the sovereign King of the universe. We are also to respect ourselves, our husbands, and all other people. Another way of describing “respecting ourselves” that may be even more accurate is “to think rightly about ourselves” or to “live in holiness in regard to how we think about and treat ourselves.” Disrespect is really another word for “sin” in a lot of ways. If I disrespect myself or someone else, my motives, thinking, attitudes, words and/or actions toward that person are hurtful and destructive.
Of course, ultimately, any sin is against God. God calls all believers to be willing to put off our old sinful selves which includes all of our sinful motives, mindsets, and fixed beliefs about God, ourselves, others, and anything else in life. We put on Christ by deciding to completely trust and follow Him. We then cooperate with God to allow Him to transform our hearts, minds, and souls by the power and truth of His Word through His Spirit working in us.
When we receive more and more of God’s truth and goodness and all that Christ has done for us and has provided for us, we then have the ability to think of ourselves the way God desires us to. We also, then, have the ability – when we have received the mercy, grace, love, truth, and healing of Jesus – to begin to extend those things to other people. The second greatest commandment is this, “love your neighbor as yourself.” God assumes that we will properly love ourselves. He does not condone sinning against ourselves. For a refresher on God’s kind of love that we are to have for ourselves and others, please check out 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
A hallmark of God’s love is that believers are to treat all other people with dignity and worth – not because we deem that person to be worthy of being treated well – but because Jesus is worthy of all of our respect and reverence and because God made all people in His image.
Nina Roesner, author of “The Respect Dare,” has a wonderful new post that I think will be such a blessing to you. She describes some of the obstacles women face on their journey to become godly women and then she lists some of the biggest ways she has seen women sin against or “disrespect” themselves. I invite you to check out her post and then I want to share a few more thoughts. 🙂
used with permission by Nina Roesner from www.ninaroesner.com
Nina Roesner’s post “Top 10 Ways to Disrespect Yourself”
We have talked about so many of these issues here:
- people pleasing
- overcommitting ourselves
- not knowing how to die to self in a healthy, godly way
- being a “doormat” giving up our personhood and God-given free-will and influence
- needing to identify Satan’s lies about God, ourselves, or others
- having unhealthy boundaries
- being afraid of and avoiding conflict
- idolizing other people, or any kind of idolatry (putting someone or something above God in our hearts) – idolatry always destroys us
- not realizing my identity and security must be in Christ alone and looking for that elsewhere
Some other ways we can disrespect (or sin against) ourselves and prevent ourselves from experiencing all of the abundant life Jesus has in store for us would include things like:
- self-harm (like cutting ourselves or purposely trying to harm our bodies)
- having a negative attitude about myself in some way, including my body-image
- complaining about myself
- cherishing any sin in my heart – which grieves the Spirit and breaks my fellowship with God if I am a believer so that my prayers are not heard
- having an addiction to anyone/anything but Jesus (including food, fitness, beauty, drugs, alcohol, screens, sugar, porn, controlling others, sex, gambling, or anything else)
- false humility
- dying to self in a harmful, destructive way
- sexual sin of any kind
- misunderstanding God’s design for femininity to mean “I am a second class citizen”
- bitterness – this is such a toxic mindset, it destroys our relationships, our fellowship with God, and our own health
- living in fear rather than in faith – there are actually physical health consequences for living in constant fear, worry, and anxiety
- complete unbelief in Christ – the unpardonable sin that results in a person facing judgment and condemnation before a holy God
- smaller degrees of unbelief in Christ – doubt robs us of God’s gifts to us as believers
- greed – which causes us to “pierce ourselves with many griefs”
- rejecting good things (like love) from God and from others
- thinking destructive things like, “I am not a ‘real person,'” “I can’t have needs, desires, or feelings.”
- allowing other people to abuse and harm us – if you are in a dangerous situation and you or your children are not safe, please check out the links on this post or reach out for help from a trusted pastor, an experienced, godly counselor, the police, or www.thehotline.org.
- justifying, excusing, or “respecting” other people’s sin against us rather than truly acknowledging our hurt and the significance of the sin against us and then extending forgiveness, mercy, and grace appropriately and also addressing their sin appropriately. We may need to reach out for the help we need if we are in over our heads. (This requires the wisdom and discernment of God’s Spirit so that we know when to overlook an offense, when and how to confront someone, and when we need to remove ourselves from a toxic situation.)
- trusting someone who is untrustworthy
- ignoring or neglecting the gifts and calling God has given to us
- Not being a good steward of my body and life
- neglecting my spirit by not feeding myself on the Word of God and by avoiding prayer and fellowship with God
If you don’t know Jesus as your Savior and LORD and you would like to know Him and to receive the gift of Life He died to provide for you, please click on this link and leave a comment for me. He can give us victory over the ways we poison ourselves. He can give us power to live godly lives that please Him and to think of God, ourselves, and others rightly as we reject toxic lies and purposely build our lives on His Word that is the source of all truth.
Much love to each of you!
Can you think of other ways we may disrespect ourselves? Or is there something here that doesn’t sound right? Let’s talk about it together!