Do you like yourself?

I open a fortune cookie a couple weeks back, silly it seems I know because no one ought to believe those things, but what it said truly took me aback and has stuck with me so much that I kept it and put in inside my phone case so will see it.

it read,
If you want people to like you, like yourself first.

I recently when through a spout of depression where I felt so unbelievably unworthy of anything and hated myself so much which in turn made me even more alone because it's true that nobody wants to be around a 'debby downer". I've been in a place where I didn't like myself and let me tell you it's lonely. I do honestly believe though that a lot of my loneliness was my own fault for not reaching out to the people I do have around me but it's still true, misery loves company but company does not love misery.

It's not that we should want people to like us but it's in our human nature. We want to be loved. We want to have friends. Although we need to realize that we are completely and fully loved and accepted by God and don't need acceptance from men its still a feeling we want as human beings, that acceptance and respect from other people. For a long time growing up, I thought I was never accepted but the reality is I never let myself be accepted. I was the one holding me back from that feeling of belonging because I didn't believe in myself. As cheesy as it sounds, it was true. I didn't believe that I was good enough. I didn't believe I could be accepted. I was the one telling myself I didn't belong, nobody else. When I finally stopped tearing myself down is when I finally felt accepted and respected and liked by others because I accepted, respected and liked myself. 

If you want people to accept you, you have to accept yourself. No one is going to respect you if you don't even respect yourself. I'm not saying you have to be 100% confident to interact with people or that you should force yourself to accept who you are so that you become more liked or popular or successful. No, I'm saying you are the only one sabotaging yourself. You are alone because you are making yourself feel lonely. You don't feel liked because you don't like yourself.

If you like yourself, if you accept yourself, then the people around you will know to accept you as well. Not everybody will of course because we live in a world full of negativity but you have to know that not everyone is against you. The world doesn't hate you. Life isn't against you. God already accepts you so why do you not? You have to know that you deserve to like yourself. God made you the way He did because He likes you that way. Don't make yourself lonely. Don't hate yourself. You deserve so much better. You are worth so much more. Believe that and others will believe it too.

You are so so loved.

"Little Children you are from God and have overcome the world. For he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." - 1 John 4:4