Let’s Talk

Rebellion and Poor Self-Esteem

Q. What are some pitfalls of rebellious adults?

A. Let’s Talk! There is a stunning truth in Scripture, “He who resists instruction despises his own soul” (Proverbs 15:32). We are seeing this combination in our culture of rebellion and poor self-esteem. Let’s talk more . . . .

When we resist instruction, we invite poor decisions and then shame. Self-esteem improves when good choices are made.

Even small children know that when we make poor decisions, we feel bad about who we are; and conversely, when we make good decisions, we feel better!

The truth is, we are to feel good about who are simply because we are created by God. But, our culture has other messages out there about what matters. Performance and achievement are just two. Certainly it is a good thing to do well, but that doesn’t mean we are to measure our worth or value by that measure alone. Counseling offices are full of clients with fear of failure issues, sense of inadequacy issues, and a sense of no value.

But it is God’s wisdom and instruction that can help us navigate the system. That is, if we don’t resist instruction and choose rebellion. We choose rebellion to feel free, to feel better, but this choice only brings the opposite. I bet we each have personal stories of prodigals who went on a search for pleasure and found that resisting instruction brought pain.

For Deeper Reflection

Proverbs 8:33 “Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it.”

Proverbs 15:5A fool rejects his father’s discipline, but he who regards reproof is sensible.”

Proverbs 15:31–32He whose ear listens to the life-giving reproof will dwell among the wise. He who neglects discipline despises himself, but he who listens to reproof acquires understanding.”

Helen B. McIntosh has a doctorate in counseling psychology and is a national board certified professional counselor and certified in reality therapy. An educator for 19 years, Dr. McIntosh is an author, a highly demanded national speaker and inventor of the Peace Rug®, an international curriculum for conflict resolution.

You can contact me confidentially at DrHelen@braveandresilient.com