By Father Apolinar Samboni
When someone asks you about other people’s lives, you easily respond by giving many opinions. You pretend to know others for their qualities and shortcomings. It also happens when someone asks you about your faults. You answer immediately giving a long list of your faults. It is well known that if you tell someone to write three defects in 30 seconds, that person easily writes so many without thinking and in less than 5 seconds. Perhaps, many people have constantly repeated their faults. Maybe that person was convinced of that. Those people who focused on your mistakes could be your parents, siblings, classmates, teachers, catechists, your partner, your Pastor. In short, anyone who interacted with you in any way. Consequently, you think that your life is a disaster. And indeed it is.
The difficult thing appears when someone asks you about your skills and talents. If you tell someone to write their three best qualities in 30 seconds, that person will tell you that it is very short time. And in fact the 30 seconds are over and that person has not written any. Maybe, that person thinks and does not find his strengths because he has always focused on his mistakes and what he lacks forgetting his many abilities and immediately looks for someone to help him to discover his talents.
That is the problem, when you focus on the poor opinion you have of yourself, you are not capable of loving others. You will always be focused on negative things and complaining about everything. You will blame others for your misfortunes and lack of opportunities. Many people say that they love their partner, but it is not true. They want to own and control the other person. Jealousy constantly deteriorates or destroys that relationship. Many couples live under one roof, maybe they sleep in the same bed, but there is no relationship that unites them. Something similar happens if you have children. You pretend to love them, but what you really want is to control them and to be dependent on you totally. You do not show them ways to grow in freedom and decide for themselves.
However, if you suffer from similar situations I invite you to decide to be a person with a high esteem because you are a son or daughter of God. Let the grace of God transform your life. Decide to count your blessings that God gives you constantly. Choose to be happy. Remember that “the greatest Glory of God is a happy person.” Do not wait for others to change. You just change and the world changes too.
Here is the great commandment that Jesus gives us: “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and all your mind… The second is like it. You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37b. 38) Many times we fake to love others, but we have forgotten to love ourselves as we are. If you do not love yourself, it is impossible to love others. Personally I invite you to love yourself, accept yourself, and love yourself. Look in the mirror and be proud of yourself. No matter what.