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You Will Never Love Yourself with Twisted Faith.

Rusty Bailey

You Will Never Love Yourself with Twisted Faith.

On the surface, it seems like a spiritual post meant to motivate you to push through life’s trials and become a better person. But it is exactly the opposite.

I ran across this post in my feed this morning and it bothered me so much because it is a perfect example of how Satan works. On the surface, it seems like a spiritual post meant to motivate you to push through life’s trials and become a better person. But it is exactly the opposite. In fact, if you follow this post's advice you will never “love” yourself. Let me explain by examining the post.

1. Before making your way out of Hell you must walk through the depths of your inner darkness. 2. Unless you first learn to first embrace that darkness within yourself, you can never pursue the light of self-love in a balanced way. 3. Genuine self-love is one of the most profound experiences in the universe. However, it usually takes time, sincere dedication, and discipline to develop. 4. We are surrounded by so many images, beliefs, and behaviors that reinforce the idea of self-hatred every day that it can be difficult for us to connect to the love inside of us.

The very first sentence is meant to make you believe this post is a Christian post by invoking the word "Hell". It’s a hook to draw in those who believe in God but may not have a strong foundation of God’s Word. The second sentence is where it goes south fast. “Unless we first learn to embrace that darkness within yourself"???? Are you kidding me! God's Word is clear on “darkness”. Eph 6:12 tells us that darkness is Satan himself and this post is saying to embrace it. The writer continues saying that “unless I embrace the darkness, I can never pursue the light of self-love in a balanced way.” Again, scripture proves how ridiculous this is. John 1: 4-5 “4 In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” Where there is light there cannot be darkness. You cannot “embrace darkness” (who is Satan) and “pursue light” (who is God). John 4:8 tells us that you cannot love if you do not know God because God is love. So, the idea that “balancing darkness and light allows me to love myself” is a lie. You see the truth of it being a lie in the next sentence. It says that “it usually takes time, sincere dedication, and discipline to “develop”. The truth is you will never achieve self-love with this formula because it is a perpetual cycle of despair and Satan knows this. Lastly, the writer tells us that because of our beliefs, behaviors, and surroundings that it is difficult for us to connect to the love inside of us. While the content of this sentence isn’t necessarily false, the context of it in conjunction with the previous sentence is meant to reinforce the difficulty of connecting to the “love” (who is God…) inside of us.

Then there is the text that is posted with the image… Don’t feel bad about feeling bad. Don’t be frightened of feeling afraid. Don’t be angry about getting angry. Life’s experiences can be challenging, but never give up. Have faith in yourself and the creator. Embrace and trust the process. Step by step you will bring yourself closer to the life you truly and righteously intent to live. Be compassionate, loving, and patient with yourself. Sometimes you need to persevere with a period of inner turmoil before the dust can settle and be swept out the door.

Let’s examine these as well. The first sentence gives examples of behavior that we all experience and then gives permission for us to continue in that behavior. What happens when we continue in these behaviors?? Depression, fear, and hatred. Scripture tells us the complete opposite of the writer’s suggestion.  Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things”, Deuteronomy 31:8 “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” And, Psalms 37: 8-9 “Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. 9 For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.” Do you see the difference?

The next sentence tells us that life is hard but to not give up and have “faith” in yourself and the creator. Again, this sentence is a hook meant to make you believe this post is written from a Christian perspective using the words "faith" and "creator." However, it says to have faith in yourself and the creator? I don’t think it was an accident that the author of this post placed the word "yourself" first. What does scripture say to do? Proverbs 3: 5-6 says “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” The paragraph continues with the idea that by embracing this process we ourselves will take steps that bring us closer to the righteous life that we intend to live. Let me make this as blunt as possible. There are no actions we can do to make ourselves righteous. Righteousness is a gift that comes from the Lord to those who accept what Jesus has done for them by faith (Rom. 5:17-18). The gift of salvation produces a changed heart, that in turn, changes our actions. Actions cannot change our hearts. It’s the heart of man that God looks upon (1 Sam. 16:7).

Lastly, the Author tells us to be compassionate, loving, and patient with ourselves and that sometimes we have to persevere with a “period of inner turmoil” before the dust can settle and be swept out the door. There is partial truth in this verse as we are to have compassion, love, and patience with ourselves. These are some of the fruits you produced when you have the spirit of God in you (Gal 5:22). The problem with the sentence comes from the word “inner” turmoil. There is no doubt we will experience hard and painful times in our lives, but to believe that it is sometimes necessary to internalize that pain and hardship is, once again opposite of scripture. Scripture tells us to “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (James 1:2-3).  

As you can see, this kind of worldly spiritualism is nothing but false teaching meant to pull you away from God's truth. So how do you love yourself? You love the One who created you. You have to be intentional with your relationship with Jesus and let His Word transform you. Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Your life is not about you! We let circumstances dictate our identity instead of our identity dictating our circumstances. We place labels on ourselves based on a circumstance like: a widow, dropout, cancer patient, failure, addict, quitter, worthless, or inmate. Our identity is found in Christ. We are, by grace through faith, adopted Sons and Daughters of God. In the book of James, it tells us that if we ask, we will receive, but that there is a correct way to ask. Most of the time we are asking for things from God instead of asking Him to be closer to us. We believe that if I can just get (you fill in the blank) we will be fulfilled. The reality is nothing can fill the emptiness inside of you except God. Choose today to humble yourself and let God show you your worth and how much He loves you.