Refund the Lies - part 2: You're Ugly & Weak
Just like you might be, I'm guilty.
I've taken my selfies, tried my hardest to wear the best clothes, dated people I shouldn't have and tried to make myself into someone I wasn't. I've been there and I've failed miserably.
My pursuit to prove that I was beautiful was a heart-aching one and often left me worse off than when I started it. Can you relate? If so, I encourage you to understand that you're normal and that the beauty/strength you're trying to find is already a part of you.
I’ve been asked quite a few times to name the book that has had the biggest influence on my life (beyond the Bible) and have referred to the same one for some years now. The book titled Captivating by John and Stasi Eldredge has undoubtedly, in my personal perspective, changed my life the most when it comes to the way I see myself.
Well, this book opened my eyes to the major life question that every male and female asks of themselves constantly whether they speak it or not. That question for females is “Am I lovely?” or “Am I beautiful?” and that question for males is “Do I have what it takes?” or “Am I strong enough?”
If we tune in closer we can actually see how our actions are affected based on what we think the answer to the questions above are. If, as a woman, I do think I’m lovely, I find myself more socially courageous and willing to put myself out there when it comes to communicating. But, if I think the opposite, I tend to close myself off to others and shrink away from opportunity. As you can see, the way we answer these questions can truly affect our lives!
So, when I began reading this book after snooping around my Canadian friend’s book shelf one fall day, my eyes were open to all the painful schemes and devices the enemy had in motion to make me constantly want to answer my question with a “no”. I had gone through some issues when I was younger with abandonment by my father (he left our family for a little bit of time when he became addicted to drugs… he’s all better by the grace of God now) and even dealt with a rape incident in college.
I realized that not allowing myself to really walk with God through the pain of these problems was causing me to see myself as ugly and not good enough. I soon began to understand that if I didn’t allow God in to heal these places, the enemy would continue to use them against me and convince me I wasn’t lovely or beautiful, which would continue to make me shy away from who I was meant to be and walk down paths in my life that were less than God’s best for me.
Yes, I bought the lie that I was ugly and less than what God had created me to be. It shook my life and made me shriek away from the power, as well as opportunities, I was made to walk in and obtain. And you know what? Hardly anyone knew at the time, but I knew… and He knew.
Why do I tell you all this? I want to make sure you’re not buying the same lie. God says that you are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14); He’s not a liar. Any voice in your head (even if it’s your own) has to bow down to the truth of what God has said regarding who you are.
If you don’t believe you have what it takes to be strong or if you don’t believe you’re lovely, I encourage you to search deep within your heart and find the reason why. Maybe it was a bad experience or a failed relationship with a parent. Maybe it was horrible words that still continue to hurt. Perhaps you lost a part of you through a tremendous accident or can’t seem to recover from an epic fail.
When you find out what that thing is, face it head on. Acknowledge it and ask God to walk you through the process of healing. Usually that process involves you holding God’s hand while looking that painful thing or person in the eyes (metaphorically--- meaning, you’re going to have to think about the painful experience that took place, not necessarily show up at your ex-boyfriend’s house) and allowing yourself to mourn the bad experience. Do what you need to: cry, scream, ask God questions… just don’t hurt yourself or anyone in the process.
Also, you’re not made to stop there. Let God continue to walk you to wholeness, like he did me. Once you’ve let out those emotions and feelings that are often pushed to the depths of who you are… pray for the person or experience that hurt you. No matter how wrong they were or still are, cover them with the love of Jesus and ask God to help you forgive.
What’s the point of all this?
Your freedom to believe that you are amazing and beautiful. Your freedom to believe that you are not a damaged piece of goods. You deserve to think of yourself the way God thinks of you. You are one of the most captivating and strong individuals He’s ever made!
Trust me: You can do this. In fact, you want to do this. And when you walk through the process of healing, you’ll be the person you’re made to be.
Mind you - this is not an overnight process… when God begins to correct your perception of who you are and begins to heal your heart, it can be tough. But the journey is worth it! When you see yourself the way God sees you, you can begin to walk in absolute freedom. And once you walk in freedom you can show others how to do the same. It’s a beautiful thing and you don’t want to live any other way.
What if our world was completely full of people who had true freedom, the freedom of God? Our earth would be a completely different place.
So, maybe it’s time to start seeing yourself with eyes of light.
Maybe it’s time to realize your beautiful.
Maybe it’s time to realize you’re strong.
Lots of love,