Who is Self?... and what is Care?
God so loved the world, (Us), that He gave His only son… We know this verse. God sees us, the real us, the faults and all, us. We don’t have to strive to achieve or be validated by others if we see who we really are to God. But do we?
How do we care for ourselves? Does it reflect how we should care for God’s creation? Does it reflect how we should care for the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit? How we care for ourselves, our body, and our spirit, reflects how we respect ourselves, and will therefore reflect onto others around us. How can we share God’s love with others if we are working on empty? How is it that you care for you?
Self-care is intentional. It is to desire to value ourselves as the Heavenly Father values us. It brings honour to God as we nurture and care for our mind, body and spirit. Self-care includes us living in a way that honours our body as a living temple for God’s presence, eating and exercising sensibly, observing our limits and boundaries, resting, giving, and receiving love, and choosing healthy relationships, including the one you have with God. It is about valuing yourself. It is not about being selfish, but about looking after the body where the Holy Spirit inhabits. If we cannot function because we are burnt out, stressed out or strung out, then God is unable to work through us. Our tiredness reminds that we are not infinite creatures, and that we are not meant to do everything ourselves. We were never meant to carry all the burdens; burn the candle at both ends or keep pushing through until we die. We are not God. We need boundaries and we need to listen to our bodies, and most of all we need God to be the one in charge.
So how do we do this? By resting, listening to our bodies, and respecting our limits. For we are fearfully and wonderfully made, as Psalm 139: 14 tells us in the message version. “I thank you High God- you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvellously made! I worship in adoration- what a creation!”
Is self-care something that you find hard to do? Is it something that you consciously include in your daily routine? Or are you more likely to work until you drop, and look after everyone around you and neglect you? If we are honest, we have all probably at one point or another been guilty of neglecting ourselves on one or two or twenty occasions. God loves us. Let’s love ourselves more and care for our bodies, minds, and spirits better in the days to come, and shine our Saviour into the world.
How have you neglected caring for your health, your body, or your relationships?
Have you ever experienced burnout? What was that experience like for you? What did you do to recover? How as it changed your life?
How does your faith affect your perspective on caring for yourself? Do you view yourself as a gift from God? Do you view yourself as the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit?
How do you prevent yourself from receiving love from God and others? How could this change if you viewed yourself differently?
“I thank you High God- you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvellously made! I worship in adoration- what a creation!”