Bible Reading: Romans 15:5-1 Accept each other just as Christ has accepted you. Romans 15:7
YOU DON’T REMEMBER what happened to you when you were born. But think about what happened to you when you were born again (see John 3:3-5; 1 Peter 1:23)-when you trusted Christ as your Savior and when God accepted you as his child:
- You became an heir of God (see Ephesians 1: 13-14; Romans 8: 17).
- You were adopted into God’s family (see Ephesians 1 :5).
- God poured his love into your heart (see Romans 5:5).
- You became one with Christ in such a way that you won’t ever be parted from him (see John 17:23; Galatians 2:20; Hebrews 13:5).
- Nothing will ever separate you from God’s love (see Romans 8:38-39).
- You will spend eternity with God in a place he has prepared for you (see John 14: 1-4).
- You were welcomed into a new family, and you are a member in good standing throughout all eternity (see 1 Corinthians 12:13, 27).
God has proven his unconditional love for you in many ways. If God loves you, you must be lovable. The fact that God loves you unconditionally in spite of your flaws and failures is a huge reason to accept yourself.
If you can’t take yourself the way you are-weaknesses as well as strengths, shortcomings as well as abilities-you aren’t likely to give anyone else the chance to accept you as you are. You will always put up a front to prevent people from knowing what you’re really like. And if you think it’s tough to be honest and open-and let others sometimes see you at your worst-it’s even harder to live the life of a phony.
When Jesus took children into his arms and blessed them (see Mark 10:16), you can bet that those kids weren’t perfect little angels. They were kids-disobedient, disagreeable, sometimes downright bad. Yet Jesus displayed his heavenly Father’s unconditional love by blessing the imperfect little ones.
Here’s a huge command-one that will change the world around you if you live it out: “Accept one another … just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God” (Romans 15:7, NIV). But you can love like God loves only when you see yourself as God sees you-totally acceptable and totally lovable.
REFLECT: In light of all God has done to prove his unconditional love, what keeps you from seeing yourself as lovable?
PRAY: Thank God today for his acceptance and ask him to help you see yourself and others with God’s eyes.