Ego: (n) a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance.
Identity: (n) the fact of being who or what a person or thing is.
The giving of compliments to a person is said to inflate one’s ego; that it makes one see themselves as more important than they really are. But how is it that we can measure just how “important” someone is, and then agree on the “right amount” of self-esteem they should have? Is there really a problem with seeing yourself as important? Is it better to have a low opinion of ourselves? How exactly should we – as Christians – perceive ourselves?
After having several discussions that touched on this subject, it set me to pondering the question of ego. Typically, it is depicted as a bad thing. Why? To begin with, it is often an issue of pride.
“Pride puffeth up, but love edifieth.” – 1 Cor. 8:1
“His pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the LORD his God. – 2 Chron. 26:16
“In his pride the wicked does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God.” – Psalm 10:4
Going off these Scriptures, we see that ego is a fleshly pride in our own achievements, our own merit, and our own self. Pride leaves no room – nor thought – for God. It is quite literally saying, “It’s all about me and what I’ve done.” This then, is ego, and it is a wrong way of thinking for it is ungodly, and a sin in itself. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, so nothing we are and nothing we do will ever be worthy of a high self-esteem.
Are we then to have a poor image of ourselves? Are we to be a lowly and depressed people with no joyful or pleasing thought for our own existence?
This is where the line between ego and identity often gets blurred. We are Christians. Yet if we did not have Christ, we could only ever be lowly and depressed, because without Him, we are nothing and without identity. Yet because we do have Christ, we have everything! It is in Christ we have our identity, we have our worth, and we have our self-esteem. It is because He makes us righteous, that we are righteous. It is because He saved us that we can lift our heads where they once hung in shame. We are new creations in Him, and we need not be ashamed of anything Christ has put into our lives.
“But You, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.” – Psalm 3:3
“For in Him we live, and move, and have our being.” – Acts 17:28
Everything we are, we are because of Jesus. Therefore, we can accept the praises of others because if He lives in us, then He is worthy of praise for what He has done in us! It is not us and our fleshly, sinful ways that people see, but the Grace of God that shines through us. Because of Christ, you are wonderful. Because of Christ, you are awesome!
In order to encourage you – the amazing person you are! – I have posted a list of declarations that state just who you are, and what you are in our Lord Jesus Christ:
Taken from www.joycemeyer.org
You – yes, you! – are all of this in Christ Jesus. One of the biggest lies satan uses in our generation is the one of zero worth. When we look at ourselves through our own eyes, it is easy to see our flaws and shortcomings. The devil plays on this mindset so that we are deceived into thinking we have no worth, and that all we have to offer no one would ever have a use for.
This is a lie, and grossly untrue.
Just by looking at the list above, you can see all you are in Christ. If you are saved, and if you have accepted Jesus as your Lord and Saviour, you automatically become a new creation. Jesus bought you: He paid the ultimate price of His life to save you, because you were worth it for Him. If He loved you and thought you were worth something so valuable, why shouldn’t you as well?
So be encouraged! You are an amazingly wonderful person, and you can answer me with a “Yes I am!” because of the One Who lives in you! Read through that list again and as you do, remember to look at yourself through the eyes of God. Living under His Grace gives us the joy and freedom of just being who we are in Christ. You are a unique and special person, whom God made unique and special. Why wish to be another someone else when you can be the only you?
Now, when others see you and compliment you, know that it is Jesus living in you Who made you that way. And why shouldn’t people see God in you? For when He Himself looks at you, all He sees is the righteousness of Christ – an awesome person.
And that my friends, is definitely something to be proud about. J