Culturally, we are told that if we could love ourselves more that would solve most of our life struggles.  Jesus said that the starting point of discipleship was to deny ourselves (Luke 9:23).  Culturally we are told that we must love ourselves before we can love anyone else.  Paul said that we must count others as more significant than ourselves (Philippians 2:3).

This can lead to much confusion as Christian try to harmonize these two sets of instructions.  The article below seeks to provide guidance on the subject.

Start with this reflection.  What kind of word is self-esteem: noun, verb, or adjective?  Is self-esteem more like that word power (noun), strong (adjective), or weight-lifting (verb)?  Is self-esteem something you want (noun), an description you want to be true of you (adjective), or a way to pursue something (verb)?

The article below introduces the idea that self-esteem is a verb.  It is a theory concerning human behavior that instructs people (rightly or wrongly) on how to pursue things like confidence, identity, security, purpose, and wisdom (nouns).  The question is, “Does self-esteem provide a path that will help us arrive at those destinations?”

If you are intrigued and want to consider the matter further, you can read SELF_ESTEEM_article_Hambrick.