Worthy of Love: Exploring the Perfect Love of God & Self

This article is based on scientific evidence and clinical experience, written by a licensed professional and fact-checked by experts.


Posted: November 20, 2023

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Have you ever struggled to feel worthy of love?

Before you can embrace a romantic love, or even the deep love of a friend, you must learn how to embrace the LOVE of your creator. 

In this article, Amy explores the perfect Love of God and what it means to love yourself by embracing God’s love for you. 

  • Society’s View of Love 
  • What God says about Love
  • God’s Design 
  • Finding True Love Through Christ
Society’s View of Love

For many of us, our view of love is shaped by society. Beginning in early childhood while our brains are vastly developing, we are constantly bombarded with this false view of love. In Disney movies and fairytales, it seems there is always a trapped princess who waits desperately for her prince charming to come and rescue her. These messages begin to shape our belief that we need someone outside of ourselves to fulfill our needs. I am not arguing that this princess needs a Savior, what I am arguing is that the savior is not the human riding up on his horse to save the day. 

 It is not only Disney and fairy tales that shape our view of love. There is also a part of society that says that you do not need anyone. This message of “self-love” is not a secure type of self-love of knowing who you are as a child of God. Instead, this self-love embodies selfishness and promotes the idea that others exist to meet and please my needs. What can they do for me? Do they make me feel complete?  Do they satisfy my needs? 

Human love, on its own, is flawed, fickle, and grows weary. Seeking this type of love outside of the love of Jesus Christ will leave you ever seeking but never finding true fulfillment. No human love can quench this thirst. Not the love of a lover, child, brother, sister, parent, or friend. 

What God Says About Love

In 1 John 4:8 it states that “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.” If God is the very definition of love, then his word is where we need to go to find out what real love is. As followers of Christ, we are called to love our neighbor, love our children, love our spouse, and even to love our enemies. God has even went as far as giving us a list of characteristics that we will illuminate if we are loving well. This is the same checklist we can use to know if someone else is loving us well. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (ESV) states “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast, it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful, it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.” A love not in pursuit of our gain, but in pursuit of reflecting and emulating the unfailing love given to us. A love that does not see love as only a means to meet our needs. As we believe and experience the perfect acceptance and love through Christ, we will find a power and a peace to love others. This brings glory to God and the fulfillment and purpose our hearts crave. This love positions us to love others well.

God’s Design

God’s design is that we would first learn about this unfailing love from our parents.

As children, we naturally internalize our world. Children take in their environment and attach meaning to their interactions and experiences. If a mom is kind to her toddler, the child does not say to himself, “Wow! My mom is so kind and loving,” though, hopefully one day this will occur to them. But in the child’s stage of development, the child receives the gut message: “I am good;” “I am enough.”

To emotionally thrive we all need the security that comes from acceptance and unconditional love. When this message is exchanged between primary caregiver and child regularly, and then reinforced thousands of times through small and routine, though impactful interactions, a child will grow strong in emotional resilience and in positive self-concept. These interactions lay the foundation for the introduction to the unfailing love of God. The idea of unconditional love is not unfeasible. They have experienced this kind of love every day their whole lives.

However, we are all being raised by human parents. Parents, who like us have been affected by The Fall when sin broke creation and us with it. We are sinners not by choice but by nature. There is often much to overcome in our adult lives as we walk out our identity in Christ of being accepted and loved. We may carry many wounds that make God’s unfailing love for us hard to believe or maybe our mind believes a truth that does not connect with our heart. We know a truth that we do not feel is true. Overcoming persistent shame-based beliefs such as, “I am not good enough” and “I am unlovable” is possible. “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31).

Finding True Love Through Christ

Your ache for love is hard wired into every fiber of you. Therefore, in your pursuit of love:

  1. Find the answer for that ache in Christ. “On the day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:37-38). Jesus stood that day and cried out to the people that he was/is the answer to the ache of their thirst. Come to Jesus and believe in his love that died on the cross for your sins to make you a son or daughter of God. Jesus told the woman at the well in John 4: 10 and 13, “If you had known me you would have asked me for a drink, and I would have given you living water. Everyone who drinks the water I give them will never be thirsty again. Because the water I give becomes in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. “Jesus is referring to salvation and surrendering to the true and unfailing love and plan of God.
  2. Order your love according to True Love’s design. You are:
    • Created for God’s glory.
    • Loved perfectly by God.
    • Accept this as true and love yourself.
    • Love others from your secure identity as loved by God: extending to spouse, children, friends, and yes even your enemies. 
  3. Pursue healing for shame. No matter how old the shame, how entrenched the lie or how

true the accusations feel, you are not the one exception to God’s unfailing love or His truth.

There is freedom for you!  May the Love of Christ compel you to love yourself and love others today.

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