The word “affirm” is a verb. Definitions include – state as a fact; assert strongly and publicly; declare one’s support for; uphold or defend; accept or confirm the validity of; offer emotional support or encouragement.
As people we all desire to be affirmed. To be told we’ve done a good job, we’re appreciated, or even that we look nice. It makes us feel loved. However, there is a problem with deriving our ultimate love from what others think of us. Why, because humans are fickle. Their emotions and feelings can change as rapidly as the tide. One minute we are in their good graces and everything seems rosy; the next minute we may feel their wrath or at least displeasure and aren’t even sure what we may have done to warrant the change.
I want to mention this because the way I was raised I was taught to please people all the time. To not make waves and have the outward appearance that everything was fine. This has been and still is sometimes one of the hardest bad habits to let go of. That’s not to say that I don’t care what people think because, let’s face it, we all wonder at times what people think of us. What I did for so many years was base my worth on how I performed, how perfect I was, how many mistakes I didn’t make, and what people thought of me.
My worth as I’ve come to realize with so much gratefulness and awe is found totally in Jesus. He loves me unconditionally. Nothing I can do can ever change that. I’ve had to repeat that over and over to myself. Nothing, not one mistake, not one bad decision, not one word said in haste or unkindness. Absolutely nothing.
Does it make God sad when I do some of those things that are outside His will or if they don’t line up with His Word? Of course it does. And I feel convicted by the Holy Spirit when I do sin (and that’s what anything is that is outside His will). I can then ask for forgiveness. Notice I said convicted, not condemned. Conviction is from God, condemnation is from the enemy. I spent a lot of years condemning myself for mistakes (actual or perceived) because I wasn’t living up to the expectation of being perfect.
I admit I still struggle with those condemning thoughts from time to time but I thank God I am getting better at recognizing them. Romans 8:1 says “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”. Amen!
What does the word affirm really mean for me now? That I am loved by an awesome God. Nothing I can do can change that. No matter what any person or the world may think of me, God loves me. Nothing can separate me from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39). I had read these verses many times but had never truly understood how powerful they are. John 10:10 says “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance”. I don’t know about you, but I want that abundant life.
I am so in love with Jesus. Psalm 37:4 says “Delight in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart”. I love that word delight. Yes, I delight in the Lord.
I am affirmed. I am loved.