I don't know about you but I always feel affirmed when I hear someone else say the same things I've been saying is true. I had one of those moments when I read a column in today's morning paper. The headline was "High self-esteem not a good trait for children to have."
Here are some excerpts:
"Research . . . has clearly shown that high self-esteem is closely associated with antisocial inclinations. . . I was not allowed to possess high self-esteem. When I had an outburst of high self-esteem, one of [my parents] would tell me I was acting too big for my britches and needed to size myself to the psychic garment in question before they were forced to lend me a literal hand.
Then there were those occasions when one or the other of them would say, "It would be good for you to always remember that no matter what you accomplish in this world, you are really just a little fish in a big pond."
Everyone in my generation heard these very healthy things from their parents. . . Research finds that the higher a person's self-regard, the lower his regard for others. . . People with high self-esteem want to be paid attention to and served. They believe in their entitlement. On the other hand, folks with high regard for others pay attention to otthers and look for opportunities to serve them.
It is inarguable that culture is best served, preserved and advanced by folks who fit into the latter category. Entitlements weaken, and a culture-wide entitlement mentality weakens the entire culture."
There is not one word in this article about the Bible but the ideas he is promoting are exactly what Jesus taught. The greatest people are those who serve, not those who are being served. Modern psychology has preached the self-esteem line so hard and so long that even gullible Christians have swallowed it. I acknowledge that it is damaging to a child to be physically or verbally abused. But that is another subject.
The goal in raising children is not to make them "feel good about themselves" but to teach them to be caring compassionate people who put the needs of others ahead of their own. "In lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves." That's the Biblical principle for self-esteem. The most humble are not only the greatest, they are also the happiest for happiness is the by-product of loving service.
J-esus first, Y-ourself last, and O-thers in between spells JOY.
High self-esteem is simply another label for plain old selfishness and pride.