Alright, I’m not one that LOVES fluffy Christian stuff. Because the Bible is anything but cute and cuddly. Souls are at stake here. But I want to pause on that and talk about something I see as a youth leader, and as a girl in the world. That is self image.
I have teenagers and friends that are so harsh on themselves(I should probably note I also am very hard on Marissa). Every out of place hair, every pore, every extra pound; they all seem to take away a little bit of our confidence one by one. Then one day you hate every picture you’re in. You have to approve tags on facebook so that your crush doesn’t see the bad pictures your mom got of you on Christmas. You won’t take a picture without a filter. I know all the things in this book, the book of self hate, because sometimes I think I wrote it. But am I really the only one? I don’t think so, and God has put that on my heart ever since my divorce. So I’m going to tackle this today. Have a seat, grab a snack, and really take in what I have to say, please.
Here is the thing, God made us in HIS image. A perfect, beautiful, whole image. But mankind experienced a fall. We weren’t able to communicate with God, sickness, death, crime, and poverty plagued us. I firmly believe that the devil has taken full advantage of this fall. Starting with our looks. If we hate ourselves, we hate what God created. Guys, God created us exactly as we are. He knew our height, our weight, our chubby cheeks, our silly teeth, our pores. He was still pleased with what He created. In Ephesians 2 it says that we are God’s workmanship. I’m really tired of differences being made to be ugly. God put His work into each of us. Stop letting society tell you what you are and let God. You are beautiful, you are called to glorious things, there is NO ONE God can ask to do your job but YOU. The world would be dull without messy hair, pimples, big butts, skinny hips, black skin, white skin, puffy red skin. I don’t want to be in a world where everything is perfect. To me, its such a brighter place with everyone’s flaws and perfections.
Another big thing that relates to this is people defining people by their mistakes. People defining themselves by their own mistakes and short comings. Again, I’m a huge offender. I’ve always been honest with my struggles, and what God talks to me about. So here is the thing: You are not defined not by your mistakes, but how you handle the mistakes. We are fallen people. We are not perfect. We have pasts that try to keep us tangled up. We have urges that we can’t seem to control sometimes. But God has called us out of our dark, messy times with the birth, death, and resurrection of His only Begotten Son; Jesus. Romans 6:6 says that our old self died with Christ. Ephesians 5:8 tells me I was in darkness, but now I am in light. I’m not saying to do anything you please, because that is false teaching. I’m telling you to give yourself grace when you fail. Sit down, rearrange your game plan, ask for forgiveness, then go forth knowing you are forgiven and whatever you did is as far as the east is from the west. God knows your heart. He knows when you’re truly repentful, when you truly are struggling.
I guess what I’m saying is take that silly selfie, if your crush doesn’t like you being silly, they don’t deserve you at your fleekiest. Approve those family photos, those are good memories. Love yourself because you deserve self love. Get back up when you trip because it was only a trip, it wasn’t the end of the sidewalk. Above all else believe that God made you and that God makes good things. Believe that grace and mercy will sustain you. Believe people when they tell you you’re awesome. Believe them when they tell you that you’re beautiful.
If you’re struggling today with how you feel about yourself, I am praying for you. and I think you’re great.