Lent 2018: Restoring Self-Esteem through God’s Word

Lent 2018
Name: Heonjae Lee
Lenten Commitment: Reading God’s word

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Over the course of the past six months, there have been a series of drastic changes in my life. I left my home in Korea where I had spent the past 14 years of my life to move to the United States. Though I was fortunate to join the DSYG community and maintain my close relationship with God, the feeling of discomfort, uneasiness, and exclusion from society has significantly lowered my self-esteem. I was having trouble keeping up my grades in school, struggling to make a genuine connection with people, and repeatedly questioning my purpose here.

These experiences made me think about a number of things that I had never questioned before – the way that I live, the choices that I make, how I view the world, and my relationship with God, etc. These are all questions that I asked when I realized my old way of thinking was not working. I waited for an answer, but I never got one.

For Lent, I knew that the only solution to all of my questions was God, and to read His word every day. I hoped that doing this would keep me more secure. I downloaded the Bible app on my phone and start reading whenever I had time in school, and surprisingly, it was very helpful. I started reading Job and Psalms – two books I had read previously. However, the same verses came to me in completely different ways than before and restored my confidence and lowered the stress that I have been going through.

I was particularly inspired by these verses from Job which personally comforted me and taught me how to endure present hardships as cultural disconnections, language barriers when meeting people, insufficient faith in my relationship with God, and academic distress:

“But he knows the way that I take;
    when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.
My foot has held fast to his steps;
    I have kept his way and have not turned aside.”

Job 23:10-11
English Standard Version

Reading these verses throughout Lent led me to break free from my selfishness and focus on what God has planned afterward. I learned that the vulnerability that innately resides within myself can be the very key to restore my relationship with God.

After Lent is over, I will continue reading verses since it is the only thing that gives me true comfort. Even though I am busy with orchestra practice, and studying for exams, I will constantly remind myself to be responsible and read the Bible. With the knowledge that my desires are truly self-centered and eyes seek for immediate, partial aspects, I will definitely endeavor for more reading, and invest more time to contemplation.

This post is a part of DSYG’s Lent Reflections series meant to educate and inspire readers on the season of Lent and its value in any Christian’s relationship with Christ. For more information on this series, click here.
To read more posts in this year’s series, click here.

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