I Love Me

Self-esteem has turned us into a nation of underachievers who are falsely self-confident. This 1-minute devotion explains this dangerous trend from a Biblical perspective.

American students have the highest self-esteem and the lowest performance of any civilized nation.(1) 

For years we've been taught that raising our self-esteem is the answer to all of our problems. Instead, it's turned us into narcissists who are unteachable and foolish.

Scripture tells us to deny ourselves, not esteem ourselves (Mark 8:34). That's because self-love is the source of many of our problems (2 Timothy 3:1-5).  

Eve started our problems when she esteemed herself enough to think a piece of fruit would put her on the same level as God (Genesis 3:1-6).

So let's heed these biblical instructions: “Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought… Honor one another above yourselves” Romans 12:3, 10

Help us stop honoring ourselves and start honoring You, Lord! 

(1) Vitz   
See a collection of thought-provoking devotions about this subject in the Self-Esteem Archive.

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Self-esteem has turned us into a nation of underachievers who are falsely self-confident. This 1-minute devotion explains this dangerous trend from a Biblical perspective.


  1. how true! and I just heard that people with "higher" self esteem have higher rates of depression!

  2. Yes, we are beginning to see the terrible results of the self-esteem movement...increased narcissism, pride, arrogance, selfishness. I was caught up in many of the errors of this movement when raising my children, but I should have seen how contrary it is to Scripture. Unfortunately, many Christian writers/speakers/teachers have embraced it.

  3. Hi Gail - this is such a great post and so much truth. And a great verse. God bless

  4. Timothy Keller just published a small but terrific book called The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness. He uses Paul as an example....not of thinking higher of ourselves...nor thinking lower of ourselves, but of forgetting ourselves completely.

  5. Very interesting. My daughter has a lot of self-love! She calls it Jocelyn's world and speaks quite highly of herself. :) She's only 8! (wink,wink)
    However, I think of what you speak of often and came across that verse a few weeks ago.
    On one hand I am always encouraging my children to think of others, to remember to serve, and to be more considerate. I want them to love as Jesus taught us to. On the other hand, I want them to love and value themselves, because I have learned that if we don't love ourselves properly or hold ourselves with enough esteem, we won't expect others to. We have to feel good, to be able to give good.
    Great post!

  6. I have found a lot of times though when people act like that are hiding the fact that they don't like their selves. Some people like myself turn it inward and tell their selves they aren't worthy blah blah. The other people have to build their selves up or put others down and try to make them look bad so they can look good. This is just what I have observed working in the public. Then there are the nice confident people who treat everyone like they should. Then their are the ones with degrees or money that treats everyone like t hey are beneath them.
    Gail I am signing up anonymous because that was the only choice that fit me. I am a friend of Kim Jackson. I am from her hometown. Went to school and church with her.

    1. Thanks for stopping by..Kim Jackson is a great friend. Bless you.

  7. Amen...good point!!

    Blessings to you♥

  8. Hmm...I think loving yourself - to a healthy extent, is biblical. I was made perfect, by a perfect God. Before I was saved I hated myself and over the last 2.5 years, I've come to a place where I can love me for me, and that was a process God walked me through. I believe the 2 Timothy 3:1-5 scripture you linked to is describing a narcissistic self-love, rather than a comfortable-with-where-you-are-but-eager-to-improve self-love.

    1. Hi Jessica,
      If you're talking about having a healthy view of ourselves, I agree.

      The Bible teaches us that we should have a healthy (i.e. realistic) view of ourselves. If we are behaving wickedly, it is right to have a low opinion of ourselves. If we are behaving righteously, it is right to feel good about what God is doing in us: "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you." (Romans 12:3). See also Philippians 2:3-4.

      When you say you were made perfect, it's true that God designed the physical human body perfect as He did our entire world. But everything was damaged when Adam sinned and no one (except Jesus) has been perfect in any sense--physically, spiritually, or emotionally-- since that time.

      Certainly, there are differences between narcissism and the kind of love you describe which sounds relatively balanced. But I imagine you came to that kind of understanding of yourself by focusing on the love of Christ and His greatness, not on loving yourself and your own greatness. Whenever we make loving ourselves the focus, we gain the wrong understanding of who we are. The Bible never encourages this.

      I'm not sure why you mentioned 2 Timothy 3:1-5. I didn't use or link to this verse. It has some validity in the discussion as the most extreme example, but narcissism is not the only unhealthy form of self-love.

      Selfishness (i.e. loving self more than God and others) is at the core of all other sins. That's why Christ says: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me." (Luke 9:23) "Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me." (Matthew 10:38).

      I am uncomfortable with the term "self-love" because it is only used negatively in Scripture. I prefer to say that God helped you view yourself in a healthy way.
      God bless you,

  9. We have been so misled!! But Jesus can restore the years the locusts have eaten!! Joel 2:25