Boost Your God Given Image
How we see ourselves affects everything we do. How can we grow a positive self-image?
Self-image determines our destiny; it can propel us into our destiny or be a roadblock. Self-image was a stumbling block for me from my early teenage years. I was raised up in a family of six in India, where my father was the only earning member in the family.
"my results and my growth were mediocre"
M y parents sent me to one of the best schools in Bombay, and I grew up with a belief system that good performance equals good results and bad performance equals bad results. I worked hard to be successful in school, in university, and in various organizations, yet my results and my growth were mediocre. As a Christian I continued to live my life with mediocre results. In the year 2000, the Lord asked me three questions, “What do you think about yourself?” “What do people think of you?” and “What do I think of you?”
I heard the Lord say very clearly to me “You have allowed yourself to be limited by believing lies such as ‘I am not qualified enough’, ‘I do not come from a wealthy family’ and ‘I am not smart and intelligent’.” The Lord said to me, “you have boxed yourself in with poor thoughts. Based on your thoughts people look at you the way you look at yourself. However, I [Jesus] do not think the same way about you. I have already spoken into your future, given you successes, given you achievements, I knew you before you were born (Psalm 139: 16). My thoughts and plans are different to what you think.”
"My actions began to respond accordingly, as God had designed me."
The Lord continued to tell me my future and through many dreams and prophetic words he began to unfold his plan for me. As I became aware of God’s plan for me, I began to think according to his plan. My actions began to respond accordingly, as God had designed me. Even when I face adversity or come under temptations, I am reminded by the Holy Spirit to stay focused on the true image and likeness of my heavenly Father.
Friends, my heart’s desire is to help people see God’s original design for their life. In Genesis 1:26, God in three persons created man in his own image and likeness. We are designed by God to reflect the fullness of the trinity and to walk in authority. We are called to be fruitful and multiply in everything we do.
Satan continues to be jealous of us because of who we are in Jesus, but God requires us to be obedient to his word and to stay focused on his promises. Colossians 1:13 shows that God has transferred us from the domain of darkness to the domain of his son Jesus; our destiny has been restored back to us. Yet why do many Christians live as if they are defeated, struggling to see God’s plan for their lives? Satan is going after our self-image; he is trying to keep us far away from God so we I will lose sight of who we are.
"What you are saying to yourself determines your future."
Self-image is a lid that determines the way we think and act. John C. Maxwell explains that the level of our self-image determines our future. We can measure self-image on a scale from 1 to 10, 10 being the highest. If our self-image is 5 then our thinking and understanding of our destiny in life will be at 4. By raising your self-image from 5 to 6, 7, or 8 you will begin to think differently and grow towards God’s plan for your life.
What you are saying to yourself determines your future. What others think of you has no bearing on who you really are. What God thinks of you affects your future. God is good and his thoughts for you are always good. We are made in his image. When you become aware of what God has already said about you, your self-image bar moves up.
Often we say, “I don’t think I can”. This rises from the belief “I don’t think I am”, a stronghold the enemy wants us to live in. When you were knit together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139: 13) God had already destined your future for you. We need to remind ourselves of the truth by holding the Word of God and the promises of God before us like a mirror (2 Corinthians 3:18). Then the glory of God within us will continue to transfigure us into his very own image in ever increasing splendor.
I hope this short article will stir you to create more space for God (the Grand Overall Designer), space to listen to what he says about you, so you can move your self-image up.
I do not know your life situation, but my desire is to help you to bring out what God has already put in you. You are already made in the image of God, even though you may not be aware of it. Become aware of what God has put inside of you and you will discover secrets and mysteries of the Kingdom of God that are within you (Mathew 13:11, Luke 17:21).
This is the first in a series on 'Boosting Your God Given Image' from Faustin Fernando. Look out for the next installment, about knowing your path in life.