Do you ever feel insignificant and wonder if anyone would notice if you disappeared? On the other hand do you struggle with thinking too highly of yourself? The following verses in Romans teach us proper self esteem. “For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith God has assigned. For as we have many members and the members do not have the same function.” (Romans 12: 3-4)
Pride comes so easily to us, but so does poor self esteem. Neither extreme brings good mental health. So what’s the answer? In the next few verses the Apostle Paul launches into an explanation of spiritual gifts, and I believe that forms an excellent basis for a balanced view of ourselves.
Think about it. God gives every believer a gift. No one gets left out. Furthermore, your gift may be mercy, but it will have a different slant than others in the church. You’ll be uniquely gifted to do a job no one else can do the way you can in the time and place you live.
Even more than that, when you exercise your gift, you become a vital part of the whole church—a necessary cog in the workings of the machinery. Should you fail to use your gift, the church will lose the special ability to touch the world as God planned. Imagine your body deprived of an eye, or even the big toe. Doubtless you’d miss either one.
Let’s revisit the verse above. Paul taught each believer in Rome “…not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think…” In other words, he’s saying not to be proud. A prideful person would think of himself as the entire machine. Nothing would happen without him, and we all know that’s not true. That’s disobeying this verse—he’s not that important.
But if a believer sees himself as a vital part of the machine, or the body of Christ, that’s healthy. He’s valuable and has something to offer. Paul continues Romans twelve this way, “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them…”
Do you battle with thoughts of insecurity? Discover and use your spiritual gift. Do you combat pride? View yourself as a member of God’s church with a vital role to play. The church needs us all, working together for God’s kingdom.
Cynthia L Simmons and her husband, Ray, have five children and reside in Atlanta, Georgia. She taught for over twenty years as a homeschool mother and Bible teacher. Active in Christian Authors Guild (CAG), she conducts writing workshops and has served as president, vice president, and conference director. In December 2009, the members granted her Life Time Membership for her numerous contributions to writers.
Cindy is fond of history and writes both historical fiction and nonfiction. Her writing appeared in CAG publications, NATHHAN NEWS, Chattanooga Regional Historical Magazine, Georgia Right to Life Newsletter, Chattanooga Times Free Press, Catholic Exchange, and Christian Devotions.us. Her first book, Struggles and Triumphs, came out in 2008.
While promoting her book, she had interviews on radio and TV across the nation and was nominated for 2008 Georgia Author of the Year. She also conducts monthly podcasts called CAG Spotlight in which she interviews authors and VIPs in the writing industry. Her most recent effort is a twelve-week Bible study using the stories in Struggles and Triumphs which should be released this month.