A few years ago, my incredible former pastor, the one and only Michael Henderson, said he was going to do something unbelievable. He was going to deliver a sermon of ONLY six words! He was able drill down everything we knew about how God intends for us to live in this world into such brevity and clarity. I was on the edge of my seat.

“Love God. Love others. Love yourself.”

Wow, that is it. He did it. Those six words say it all. If we carry those six words with us throughout each day and apply them, how beautiful our world becomes, one moment of love at a time. God wanting us to love him and have an intimate relationship with him is pretty understood. Loving others is the flagship belief of Christianity. I think the last two words were what threw some of us.

It is not that I, or anyone disagrees, but somehow in this world, loving yourself has come to seem like a bad thing. It seems selfish, self-centered, narcissistic, unhealthy, unnecessary, et cetera. However, maybe that is all wrong. My pastor that day made me realize that like the “others” I am to love, I am also a child of God and God wants me to receive love as much as he wants me to dispense it. God looks for the good and care of all of us. If I treat myself with apathy or lack of respect, or worse, self-deprecation, I am insulting and degrading his creation. Whoa. Not okay! Understanding that truth was the beginning of my journey toward healthy self-care.

Wishing you a life of these six words,

Nikola Rosa