Thursday, September 27, 2012

Beautiful

Is the Word of God something I trust in? When I read the Bible, do I believe what it says? Yes I do. Wait, I meant YES, I DO!!! Then why do I have trouble thinking some verses don’t apply to me?

Matthew 6:25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life”
(I worry with the best of them!)

Philippians 4:19 “..my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus”
(So why do I work so hard to provide what I think I need?)

Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
(Rest? Me? I don’t have time to rest.)

Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
(I’m pretty good with the first half of the verse, but I tend to lean a bit too heavily on my own understanding…)

But this next one? Ugh, how could it apply to me?
Psalm 139:14 “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

Me? Wonderfully made? Hello! I’m wrinkled, 5’1 ½” (on a good day), freckled, weigh over 200 pounds, have fine and purple hair (ok, I did the purple to myself!). I’m not graceful by any means and my IQ prevents me from being considered a nerd. So um, yeah, how does this verse apply to me?

For years, my comments generally sounded something like this: “Don’t take a picture, I’d break the camera lens.” “When I back up, I should beep.” “Participate in sports? Not me, I’m a klutz.” “Describe myself? Short and fat. How’s that?”

My husband and a couple of my children often asked me to stop putting myself down because it bothers them. I tried, very hard, to stop belittling myself. Then, insert dramatic music here, someone very close to me gained weight after giving birth to her second child (Go figure! You gain weight when you have a baby? Who knew?) and she started doing the same thing to herself and it really hurt me.

Whenever she makes a negative comment, she laughs it off, but I remember doing the same thing. I would make fun of myself to prevent anyone else from doing it. It’s sort of an ironic defense mechanism. She is not only creative and fun, she’s truly beautiful. But lately, there isn’t a person on the planet who would be able to convince her of it. So I started praying about how to show her the true value of who she is.

Do you know what happened? No, God didn’t provide a miracle healing of her self-image, He didn’t show me a verse to give to her. What God did was to put a mirror in front of me.


And OUCH! Those lessons are often the hardest to learn. I’ve spent years being self-deprecating, putting myself down, and insulting myself in front of the people who love me most. What does that say to them? I was allowing my opinion of my appearance to affect how I thought others viewed me. It wasn’t until God placed this mirror in front of me that I was truly able to see the damage I have caused. Therefore, I will focus more on what the Bible says and less on how I feel. Feelings can get us in trouble, that’s “leaning on your own understanding”.

I will encourage others to trust scripture over opinion. Read Proverbs 31 about the wife of noble character (yes, impossible to fill her shoes, but I do have a point).

Proverbs 31:10-12 “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.”

Proverbs 31:25-27a “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household"

Proverbs 31:28 “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her”

Proverbs 31:30 “Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”

EPIPHANY! Did you notice it? There is no mention of her physical appearance anywhere in the passage. How we look on the outside is not what makes us beautiful! Our character, the way we treat others, our attitude, our speech, and our faith are what make us, as women, beautiful. The Bible says it and I believe it. Now it's time to start acting like it.

In conclusion: Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Me! CAS, made in the image of God! That makes all the freckles, wrinkles, 200+ pounds and purple hair. Beautiful to the One Who matters most. My Creator!

Wishing you the best of blesses and the least of stresses. God thinks you’re beautiful, and so do I!


5 comments:

Susi aka Sinead said...

What an inspiring post! I also tend to look down on myself a lot, and my self esteem (regarding a lot of things, not only appearance) is a disaster. Also Proverbs 31 brings me down, because it feels too impossible, not to mention when people throw scriptures about worry in my face that makes me worry more because now I also have to feel guilty because I worry... But what inspired me in your post was character... to be one that shows love and compassion. And how it makes us beautiful!

CAS said...

Thank you so much for your comments. It has taken me years to learn that character is so much more important that beauty. Beauty is different for every person, but real character is defined by God.

Anonymous said...

Colleen - You do a great job getting your thoughts into words and it's wonderful that you can add scripture to help us all learn to be better people. We can't do it on our own. I'll have to take time to read more! Denise

Tranae said...

I love this post. And it is right on time for some of the things I've been going through.

Elle Sees said...

this is a great lesson to read today. following you back and hope you visit someday.