Liking Yourself -- By Joseph J. Mazzella

"Come and share your master's happiness!" (Matt 25:23 NIV)

My oldest son loves to smile. In almost every picture of him from infancy to the present day, he has a huge smile on his face. He doesn’t just smile for the camera either. I notice that he also smiles at himself in the mirror after he shaves and brushes his teeth. He also shares that smile when he says "good morning" to me in the morning and "I love you" to me at night. He also shares that smile when we joke, laugh, and play. He also shares that smile when he greets all of his friends at school, on the street, and everywhere he sees them. He also shares that smile along with his warm, friendly, and happy spirit with the whole world everyday of his life.

Why does my son spread so much love and joy to the world? Why does his smile light up the days of so many of us? How does he do it in spite of his handicaps and all the difficulties he must daily face? The answer is simple. He likes himself. He likes himself and he loves who he is even with all of his limitations. He enjoys each day God gives him here and delights in sharing his happiness with everyone. He loves life, he loves God, he loves himself, and he loves others.

Norman Vincent Peale said: "It is of practical value to like yourself. Since you must spend so much time with yourself you might as well get some satisfaction out of the relationship." Don’t be afraid to like yourself. Don’t be afraid to love yourself. Smile in the mirror. Dance in the sunshine. Greet everyone you meet with a grinning face and a cheerful heart. Laugh and be happy in your life. Take pleasure in becoming who you were meant to be just as my son does.

God put you here for a reason and hating yourself isn’t a part of it. You are a Child of God. You are a being of light. You are a creator of happiness. You are a smiling messenger of goodness. You were created in love, by love, and to love. Like who you are then, love who you are becoming, and always share that person with the whole world.

By: Joseph J. Mazzella