Bible Reading: 1 John 3:1-2
See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children, and we really are! 1 John 3:1
BACK IN THE 1970s a singing group called the Staples Singers scored a hit with a song written by Luther Ingram and Mack Rice. More recently, the Christian group Big Tent Revival has recorded the song on their debut CD.
The song is called “Respect Yourself,” and it contains the message “If you don’t respect yourself, / Ain’t nobody gonna give a good ga-hoo!”
Now, you may ask, “What is ‘a good ga-hoo’?” Good question. Don’t know. Don’t even know what a bad ga-hoo would be. But that’s not the point.
The point is, the message of Ingram and Rice’s song is a good one. It’s even biblical. According to the Bible, respecting yourself is right.
After all, the Bible says, “See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children, and we really are! But the people who belong to this world don’t know God, so they don’t understand that we are his children. Yes, dear friends, we are already God’s children, and we can’t even imagine what we will be like when Christ returns. But we do know that when he comes we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is” (1 John 3:1-2).
Those verses mention several good reasons for respecting yourself. First, in addition to being created by God, you are his child! Not only that, when Christ returns, you will be made like him in ways that will blow your mind! Now, that doesn’t mean that you should forget that you’re a sinner (like everyone else) or that you should become proud or think you’re better than anyone else. It simply means that you should respect yourself, for two reasons: because of what you are and because of what you are becoming!
So do what songwriters Ingram and Rice say: Respect yourself. But don’t do it just because they say so; do it because God’s Word says that respect for yourself is right.
REFLECT: What two reasons does today’s Bible reading give for respecting yourself? Do you respect yourself? If so, in what ways? If not, how would your words and behavior change if you started respecting yourself? How can you show more respect for yourself in the future?
ACT: The next time you’re in a Christian bookstore, ask to listen to Big Tent Revival’s arrangement of “Respect Yourself” (on their Big Tent Revival CD).
PRAY: “Father, respecting myself might be harder sometimes than respecting others. But I thank you that I’m your child and that when your Son returns, I will be like him. Help me to talk about and treat myself as a child of God who is being changed into the image of your Son.”