If your goal is to maintain good physical health, you pay attention to some important details:
You need knowledge about these areas so you provide time and expend energy to inform yourself of what is involved. Your interest is to act according to your knowledge.
There may be days when you are tempted, or even choose, to consciously behave in ways contrary to your knowledge. Then you renew your commitment to your goal and start over again.
If, on a daily basis, you do what is necessary, you are on your way to good physical health. No one else can do these things for you.
Likewise, if your goal is to build self-respect-or self-love, you also pay attention to some important details. You need knowledge, so you provide the time and energy to inform yourself of what is involved. Your intent is to act according to your knowledge. No one else can do this for you. Either you do this for yourself or it won’t be done.
If you neglect these areas, you will sooner or later sense a dislike of yourself and your neighbor.
The Bible gives some broad, basic instructions for wholesome living. Jesus said:
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38).
How can you know if you love God that much?
Jesus answers that question:
If you love Me, you will keep My commandments (John 14:15).
If you seek physical health, you learn the fundamentals, get into shape, and strive constantly to stay in shape. The effort and the result is one of the delights of life. If you seek self-respect or self-love, you learn the fundamentals, get into shape, and strive constantly to stay in shape. The effort and the result is one of the delights of your life.
Jesus said there is another very important commandment:
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39).
I have spent a lifetime listening to the stories of people who don’t like themselves. As a result, they have problems loving other people. If you don’t love yourself, you are out of shape and unable to love your neighbor as Jesus commanded.
The details of why my clients don’t love themselves vary, but gradually I’ve become aware of recurring themes in these stories as people tell me how they have chipped away at their own self-respect. This leads to personal anxiety and misery as well as trouble with other people in the following areas:
To locate yourself–-that is, to determine if your performance in each of these areas builds up or chips away at your self-respect–-you need a standard to go by, a mirror. This post has used the Bible as the standard.
Hopefully, we have whetted your appetite to know more, and you will search your Bible to enlarge your knowledge.
As your behavior, speech, reactions, thoughts, and goals come closer to matching God’s commandments, you will have a growing sense of self-respect and a growing love for your neighbor.
This is the “Conclusion” from Dr. Brandt’s book, I Want Happiness Now!
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