I’ll never forget the day. My young son came home from school despondent, and lacking his normal carefree smile. When I scooped him up in a hug and attempted to lighten the mood with a tickle-fest, I was instead greeted with tears.
“Mom, some kids at school said I wasn’t smart enough to sit at the cool kids’ table.”
I thought my heart was going to shatter into a million pieces right there in front of this sweet boy who had a heart of gold and the most generous spirit to boot.
I could tell him it wasn’t true. I could tell him what I thought. More importantly, I would share with him what God said because that’s the only One whose opinion counts.
I spent many years listening to wrong opinions. Too many years, in fact, not really appreciating what God said about me. I lived too long believing that God was mad at me, and that He needed me to be perfect in order to love me.
What if we decided to no longer let the enemy destroy our identity and dealt with the issue of self-hatred? What if we stopped giving so much credit to the opinions of others, and cared only about the One whose opinion counts? What if instead of going down the road of comparing ourselves to others we stopped and said, “Father, I’m about to beat myself up, but before I do, why don’t you tell me what you think of me? How do you see me, Father?”
Wouldn’t that change everything?
I grew up in the church. I accepted Christ as my Savior when I was seven years old, and I was in church every time the doors were open. In fact, my family often opened the doors!
I attended Sunday School every week, and won the white Bible for inviting the most people to church. I scored when it came to Scripture verse drills. And yet, if I’m being honest with you, something was missing: I didn’t really know what God said about me. That made me easy prey for the enemy of my soul to flood my mind and my heart with lies that stole my joy, killed my peace, and destroyed my identity.
Scripture says, “My people perish for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).
What I didn’t know then was exactly what my son needed to know in order to settle the issue of his worth, and to realize that while others may reject us, he was accepted by the only One whose opinion counts.
He needed to know, and maybe you do too, that God says:
You are beautiful. (Psalm 45:11)
You are lovely. (Daniel 12:3)
You are loved. (Jeremiah 31:3)
You are chosen. (John 15:16)
You are special. (Ephesians 2:10)
You are created in His image. (Genesis 1:27)
You are cared for. (Ephesians 3:17-19)
You are strong. (Psalm 68:35)
You are precious. (1 Corinthians 6:20)
You are protected. (Psalm 121:3)
You are unique. (Psalm 139:13)
You are important. (1 Peter 2:9)
You are forgiven. (Psalm 103:12)
You were created for a purpose. (Jeremiah 29:11)
You are empowered. (Philippians 4:13)
You are a new creation. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
You are accepted. (Ephesians 1:6)
You are the apple of His eye. (Zechariah 2:8)
You are family. (Ephesians 2:19)
You are His. (Isaiah 43:1)
He and I would have to have additional discussions for this to sink in, but it was a great place to start. The best place to start, in fact—knowing the truth that matters from the One whose opinion counts.
Do you know what God says about you? Which of these do you need to embrace today?
Because of Him, #HopePrevails
You can also find out more about the book, “Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression” below.
A short brief about Hope Prevails.
Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey through Depression
Dr. Michelle Bengtson
Speaking from personal and professional experience, a neuropsychologist unpacks what depression is, shows how it affects us spiritually, and offers hope for living the abundant life.
Neuropsychologist Offers Hope to Those Struggling with Depression
-By 2020, depression will be our greatest epidemic worldwide
- An estimated 350 million people worldwide suffer from some form of depression
- As with the bestselling My Stroke of Insight, the author experienced the same condition she treats
- Helpful features include personal stories, biblical truths, prayers, and music recommendations
In Hope Prevails, Dr. Bengtson writes with deep compassion and empathy, blending her extensive training and faith, to offer readers a hope that is grounded in God’s love and grace. She helps readers understand what depression is, how it affects them spiritually, and what, by God’s grace, it cannot do. The result is a treatment plan that addresses the whole person—not just chemical imbalances in the brain.
For those who struggle with depression and those that want to help them, Hope Prevails offers real hope for the future.
Hope Prevails is available now wherever books are sold. To find out more, see: http://drmichellebengtson.com/hope-prevails-book/.
(If you have a question you’d like Dr. B to answer, contact her here now. Your name and identity will be kept confidential.)