Enjoy Life, Enjoy God

Dale Patterson


February 10, 2010

Self-Esteem is a relatively new concept. It was deemed a corrective to self-condemnation, among other things. But self-esteem is as prone to misapplication as is self-loathing.

Thou knowest my great unfitness for service, my present deadness, my inability to do anything for thy glory, my distressing coldness of heart.
I am at a loss to know what thou wouldest have me do...
- The Valley of Vision Prayerbook

The Puritans never heard of self-esteem, yet they loved their God, and had a healthy appraisal of their virtues and vices. They knew themselves. Their prayers represent a truthful and honest self-appraisal. They did not think too much of themselves; I don't know if that meant they were a bit twisted self-esteem-wise or not. But they knew their hope was not in the word, "self." Their hope was in Jesus.

That's true for us, as well, shoddy self-esteem or not. They were quick to drink from the fountain of God's grace. So they also prayed: "I confide in thee and lean upon thee, and need thee at all times to assist and lead me."

Dale Patterson