"Mom, can you help me make an eBay account?” my 10-year-old son, Nathan, asked.

“Why do you want to get on eBay?”

“I want to sell some of the toys I’ve outgrown.”

I went into his room so he could show me the items he wanted to sell, but I quickly realized his plan was not a viable one.

“Honey, this isn’t going to work,” I said. “These toys would cost more to ship than anyone is going to pay for them.”

“Mom, this stuff is really valuable. It’s worth a lot of money.”

“Nate, something is only worth as much as you can get someone to pay for it. I don’t think people are going to pay a lot for your used stuffed animals and puzzles.”

Mirror, Mirror
His shoulders slumped. “I’m so dumb. Why did I think this was a good idea?”

“Nathan, you’re not dumb. I don’t want to hear you say that again.”


“Because the way we talk to ourselves is important. If we always tell ourselves we’re dumb, we start to believe it, and that impacts how we feel about ourselves.”

“But, Mom, yesterday when you forgot your keys, I heard you say, ‘Ugh, I’m such an airhead.’ Doesn’t that mean you think you’re dumb?” 

“I shouldn’t have said that.”

“And a few days ago, I heard you say the word ‘fat’ when you looked in the mirror.”

Through His Eyes
I sat down on the bed and patted the spot next to me. “I think we both need to work on how we talk to ourselves,” I said.

“How do we do that?”

“A good rule is not to say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say to someone else. I would never tell someone else that they are fat or dumb, so I shouldn’t say that to myself, either. It’s a bad habit, and I need to break it to be a better example for you.”

Nathan nodded. “I think it’s easy to think bad things about ourselves though.”

“I agree. Maybe we need to see ourselves the way God sees us. He created us and He loves us so much. He doesn’t think we’re dumb.”

“Does He think we’re fat?”

I chuckled. “No, He thinks we’re wonderful, and He wouldn’t want us to talk to ourselves in a bad way.”

“How do you know how God sees you?”

“Remember what I said before about something only being worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it? Think about how much God paid for us.”

“He paid everything. He sent Jesus so we could go to heaven.”

I nodded. “We have that much value in God’s eyes. He wanted to save us from our sin so badly that He was willing to sacrifice His Son for us. We’re worth that much to God.” 
“He must love us a lot.”

“He does, and He doesn’t want us to feel bad about ourselves. If we can see ourselves through His eyes, we’ll treat ourselves more kindly.”

Nathan was quiet for a minute. “So instead of not saying anything to ourselves that we wouldn’t say to someone else, let’s not say anything to ourselves that God wouldn’t say to us.”

I nodded again. “I like that, Bud. Let’s talk to ourselves the way God would.”

“Because He loves us just the way we are.”

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