1 John 3:18-21 (Msg) My dear children, let’s not just talk about love; let’s practice real love. This is the only way we’ll know we’re living truly, living in God’s reality. It’s also the way to shut down debilitating self-criticism, even when there is something to it. For God is greater than our worried hearts and knows more about us than we do ourselves. And friends, once that’s taken care of and we’re no longer accusing or condemning ourselves, we’re bold and free before God!

Are you your own worst critic? And in response to that criticism, are you constantly trying to transform yourself into a person who meets society’s expectations, but not God’s expectations? If so, it’s time to become a little more understanding of the person you see whenever you look into the mirror.

Being patient with other people can be difficult. But sometimes, we find it even more difficult to be patient with ourselves. We have high expectations and lofty aspirations. We want to receive God’s blessings now, not later. And, of course, we want our lives to unfold according to our own wishes and our own timetables, not God’s.

Yet throughout the Bible, we are instructed that patience is the companion of wisdom. Proverbs 16:32 teaches us that “Patience is better than strength” (NCV). God’s message, then, is clear: we must be patient with all people, and yes, including ourselves. Loving and accepting yourself gives you the capacity to love and accept others.

Furthermore, the Bible teaches that when we genuinely open our hearts to Him, God accepts us just as we are. And, if He accepts us with faults and all then who are we to believe otherwise? Love yourself today like never before dear friends, it helps us love others!

Prayer: Great God, I have so much to learn and so many ways to improve myself, yet You love me just as I am. You are the Potter and I am the clay. Please help me to love me the way I am. Help me to trust that you are shaping and molding me into the person you would have me to be. In Christ name, Amen.

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