What does love have to do with recovery? EVERYTHING! Easily a book could be written on this subject but I only have a few lines, so here goes.
Lack of self-love results in a tremendous amount of inner pain. Low self-esteem often leads people to look to sources outside of themselves for the love that they do not feel for themselves. This can result in “looking for love in all the wrong places” like same sex relationships, drugs, abusive relationships, codependent relationships, eating too much, alcohol, improper sexual relationships, etc. Or one might try medicating the pain with drugs, alcohol, food, gambling, etc.
Before I could learn self-love and self respect, I had to learn just how much God loves me because ultimately, my self worth is grounded in Him. In the Bible Jesus tells us,
Matthew 6:33 KJV “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
If we seek first to learn about and understand His Love for us everything else will come naturally. Paul tells us in Romans 8:38-39 KJV:
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1 Corinthians 2:9
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him.
If God feels I am worthy of this kind of love, then I most certainly can learn to love myself. If God loves me this much, then I want to live *FOR HIM* instead of living for myself or living to ease inner pain. My addictions and dysfunctional behaviors suddenly are seen for what they really are: poor substitutes for Him and His Love for me.
There is an excellent book and workbook all in one that is written to help you with self love. It is called Search for Significance by Robert S. McGee.