Do you feel you are worth being loved? That you were created with unique capabilities?
Each of us was born with an IALAC sign – I Am Lovable And Capable. Dr. Sidney B. Simon, a professor of education, created this acronym to encourage children to value themselves.
When I first found the IALAC acronym, I was baffled. What?! I am lovable and capable? No way! Why didn’t I feel lovable as a child? Why did I feel like people were better off if I wasn’t around? Why do I still feel that way sometimes? Why did I feel like I was incapable of any good? Why did and do I feel afraid to start something big because I’ll fail anyway?
As I searched God’s Word, I learned how true it is that God actually has created us as lovable and capable. Contrary to the belief I grew up with when I felt like I had no “worth” at all in the sight of God. He was hovering over me as an angry Judge ready to cast me into hell fire if I stepped one toenail out-of-the-way the church said was “right.” I didn’t hear about how Jesus delights to take children on His lap and tell them of His love for them.
It has been confusing to sort through these feelings of intimidation. To realize that though we were born sinners and God does require justice, He is still a God of love Who has sent His Son to take our place. We were born “unworthy,” meaning we don’t deserve any merit or favors from God. But God did not create us as “worthless,” meaning we have no importance or value at all. That we are useless and may as well be thrown onto a junk pile. No, we are not worthless in God’s sight. He delights to save us. If we had no importance at all, God would never have created us so uniquely. If we had no value, Jesus would never have died for us.
When we were born, God gave us His sign of significance. We were created in His image as lovable and capable. But sadly, some of us may have lost our sign already early in life. Piece by piece, negative words and hurtful actions may have shredded our signs. Abandonment, neglect, abuse – verbal, physical, spiritual, sexual – and other traumatic life events can rip huge chunks out of our signs and leave us feeling totally worthless.
It can be exhausting to change ingrained “I am worthless” thought patterns to “I am significant and valuable to God.” It’s a lifelong learning process, and we certainly need a daily dose of power through Jesus. But through Him all things are possible. He can restore and rebuild what has been taken away from us. He can give us a new and better sign – IALACIJ: I Am Lovable And Capable In Jesus!
In God’s eyes, you are special and deserving of dignity. You were created in His image; there is something inborn in you that makes you lovable, no matter how worthless you may feel. He created you with unique capabilities. There is no one else like you. Stand before a mirror today and say: I Am Lovable And Capable In Jesus!