Loving God and Ourselves


Exodus 3:1-15

Mtt. 22:34-40

Rev. Kit Billings

May 2, 2004

“An occasional compliment is necessary, to keep up one's self-respect. When you cannot get a compliment any other way, pay yourself one.”

--Mark Twain

  1. This morning I'd like to talk with you about an emphasis within the Two Great Commandments Christ gave us, which needs to be covered now and then—loving ourselves as part of loving the Lord and others.

So the question is, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

What does it mean to love ourselves appropriately?

How often do you let yourself feel this way? Not as an ego-trip, but simply personally, deeply, embracing the truth of what is…that you are immensely loveable in God's eyes as the highest creation of God's handiwork.

  1. Swedenborg's concept of the "Four Loves" and the critical importance of how we Prioritize them.


  1. A general sense of humor--but also an ability to laugh at yourself too.

There's a story about President and Mrs. Coolidge visiting a poultry show. The guide says to Mrs. Coolidge, "You know, ma'am, the rooster here performs his services up to eight or nine times a day," to which the First Lady replied, "Please see to it that the President is given that information!"

A while later the President's party came through the same exhibit and the guide told him, "Sir, Mrs. Coolidge said to be sure to tell you that the rooster there performs his services up to eight or nine times a day." Coolidge thought for a moment and asked, "Same chicken each time?"

"No, Mr. President, different chickens each time."

"Then see to it that Mrs. Coolidge is given that information!"

I sense that President Coolidge and the First Lady back then each had some healthy self-love operating.

  1. An ability to love others, as another, not merely as a part of yourself------OTHERS' WELL-BEING IS CLOSE TO YOUR HEART.

  1. You have a deep concern about God.

  1. Setting limits for yourself- - - - - living realistically.

  1. Self-care = care for your BODY.

  1. Spending time with yourself:

  1. walks

  2. listening to music

  3. quiet reflection and meditation

  1. Spending time, energy and/or money to enrich your inner life: education, reading, seminars.

  1. Maintaining healthy relationships to meet your own needs for giving, nurturing relationships, ones that are filled with LOVE, tenderness, fun, and inspiration and spirituality.

  1. Allowing yourself to feel ALL your feelings that come from God. A sense of wholeness; a sense of BREADTH and DEPTH and of the many MANSIONS WITHIN.


  1. Then there are things that can look like appropriate self-love but aren't!

  1. Self-indulgence - - - - - doing whatever we want when we want to do it much of the time.

  1. Always getting our own way.

  1. Needing to be boastful.


  1. For me, part of the truth I come to about what a healthy sense of self is stems from the wonderful nature of our Creator.

  1. Yet long before Jesus entered the dramatic scene of life on earth, we are blessed to know of a miraculous discussion between the great Israelite leader, Moses, and the Lord.

  1. God hopes that we will open ourselves to a deepening throughout life of developing more and more into the "IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD."