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As Valentine's Day is approaching, love is in the air, along with commercialism. Flowers and chocolates are for sale at every store. However, instead of buying significant others flowers, thousands of people are inspired to buy themselves bouquets. The song “Flowers” by Miley Cyrus has been at the top of the charts for three consecutive weeks. Multiple sources call it the “self-empowerment anthem” of the year. The lyrics state, “I can buy myself flowers/Write my name in the sand/Talk to myself for hours/Say things you don’t understand/I can take myself dancing/And I can hold my own hand/Yeah, I can love myself better than you can.” It promotes self-love and independence. However, is self-love biblical?

The definition of self-love is “regard for one’s own well being and happiness.” Self-love is the foundation of knowing your worth, being confident, and loving yourself as you are. On TikTok, when you search “self-love journey”, video after video promotes journaling, eating healthy, working out, and routines. These habits can be positive for your mental and physical health.

Loving yourself is also mentioned in the Bible. Ephesians 5:29 states, “For no one hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church.” We are commanded to love our neighbors as ourselves in Mark 12:31. The foundation of loving others is built on nourishing, cherishing, and loving ourselves. However, self-love, a positive thing, can quickly turn into self-idolization unless Christ is our cornerstone.

My mom tells me, “The words pride and anxiety have the letter ‘i’ in the middle of them. When we place ourselves (I) in the center of our lives, it leads to pride (a form of insecurity) and anxiety.” Her quote reframed my perspective. If we want to experience self-love and peace, we must place Christ in the center of our lives. We should love ourselves because we are made in the image of our Creator, not because of our beauty, strength, or ability.

So, the key to self-love is falling in love with our Creator. When you love someone, you desire to spend every moment of every day in their presence. By spending time in the Word, worshiping, and praying in every moment and every circumstance, we love Christ. When we learn about who HE is, it defines who we are. Society says self-love is coalescent with independence. In Christ, self-love is coalescent with dependence on Him. Self-help may feel like a fix, but it will leave you feeling more empty and insecure than ever before.

In John 15:13, Jesus describes the greatest act of love: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Selfishness is different from self-love. You can love yourself, but if you are not willing to place others' needs above your interests, it is selfishness. A healthy love for yourself should come from seeing yourself as God sees you, and allowing His presence to fill you so you can fill others with love.

This Valentine’s Day, you can buy yourself flowers, but remember who loves you so much He wore a crown of thorns. You can write your name in the sand, but remember who defines you. You can talk to yourself for hours, but remember who wants to hear your prayers. You can hold your own hand, but remember who loves you so much, nails were pierced through His hands. You can never love yourself better than Christ can.



"He has made everything beautiful in its time."

Ecclesiastes 3:11

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