What Matters Most

“What do you want to do to celebrate your birthday?” my friends asked. That question makes 
me smile all over. It’s amazing when friends and family decide to take time to give presents 
and cards with words of love and affection written on them. As much as I enjoy myself, (and 
celebrating my birth), I pause and wonder at the warmth I feel that other people love me too. And 
say to me “I’m glad you were born. My life has become better because you are in it.”
One of the techniques I use in counseling to help my clients begin loving and accepting 
themselves is mirror therapy. In my office is a mirror I purchased from the dollar store. It’s pink 
and has a plastic princess crown on top. I instruct my clients to look into that mirror and say
words like: “I’m proud of you. I believe in you. I am confident you are going to succeed. I love
It sounds so simple yet the effect is profound. At first it feels uncomfortable and silly. But when
the exercise is over, a breakthrough begins. The Scriptures instruct us to love others as we love
ourselves. The tricky part is beginning to love ourselves. 
Birthday celebrations can be two-fold. It’s a way of telling someone “I honor you and I’m glad
you are in my life.” Also, it’s a message we can choose to tell ourselves. Use mirror therapy. I
encourage you to take a moment today and look into your eyes in the mirror and give yourself a
love message. Think about the meaning of John 3:16. Put your name into the verse that states:
“This is how much God loved Sandra: He gave his Son, His one and only Son. And this is why:
so that Sandra need not be destroyed; by believing in Him, Sandra can have a whole and lasting 
life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending His Son merely to point an accusing finger (at 
Sandra), telling Sandra how bad she was. He came to help, to put the Sandra’s world right
That, my friends, is the real reason to be glad! Yes, it’s my birthday and all month my family 
and friends have honored me! But God also celebrates Sandra Stanford, and for that reason, I am 
eternally grateful.


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