He said, “That you love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and muscle and intelligence—and that you love your neighbor as well as you do yourself.”
Ready for a unveiling? God has been working on this one with me for awhile. In the last week it has just been pounding me harder and harder about who am I, am I who God designed me to be, am a false representation of God’s creation? All of these questions began to pop up when I was faced with surgery. Now let’s get this straight, I am not afraid of the back surgery which God has clearly said is the correct direction for healing, I on the other hand am concerned about many other things!
Let me elaborate. I have been in pain with my back since April and we have just been waiting for the OK from workman’s comp to go ahead and schedule surgery. You would think that I would be really excited to finally be able to be healed, well I am, BUT, all these thoughts began to flood into my head: I have to take the nail polish off my toes which I am already embarrassed by, I have to not wear my contacts, I cannot wear make-up that day, I will need to wear loose comfortable clothes like sweatpants in public AND the worst one, I have to take out my dentures for surgery and trust someone to take care of them. Can you believe that I am more afraid of all those things then a knife in my back to fix me?
My loving husband has always said he loves me no matter whether I wear make up or not and probably like most women who have come from abusive relationships, I don’t full believe or understand that kind of love. I spent several years of my life covering up the hurting me on the inside. I always wore make up, I wore nice clothes, I made it a point to do something with my hair…the whole nine yards and for the first time in YEARS I am questioning why? Why are these things so important? Am I hiding again? Am I pretending to be stronger than I really am?
So began today’s journey. Who is Yourself? I have been struggling with several things in the last week and I am not bragging or trying to say I am better than anyone else when I share this, it’s just the facts of my life. I have many talents: cake decorator, photographer, worshiper, published writer and a creative brain which likes to paint and create. I was asking God, “Why did you give me so many talents??” I just could not wrap my mind around it two days ago but today God simply says “Because I love to see you happy.”
After I accepted the part about talents then I started looking at me. Just me. Why do I refuse to leave the house without make-up? What am I so afraid of? Perhaps I think no one will love me because its all about my appearance not my heart. It became a struggle within myself. I began to see two sides of me in the mirror.
It was as if half of me was still shattered. Afraid to be loved. Past hurts still stung. Because of this I have a really hard time with people loving me for who I am on the inside. I always figured if I looked good on the outside I would be accepted and loved. No one wanted to see the not-so-strong little girl hanging out on the inside. The girl who doesn’t always want to fight her own battles. The girl who sometimes wants to cry when the going gets tough. The girl who wants so desperately to be loved for who God created her to be.
Today was good for me. God showed up and loved on me. He reached in and pulled me near and I felt safe and secure. In His lap He told me that it’s okay to wear make-up, it’s part of who I have become. It’s what make me happy. He told me I am not hiding behind the make-up and clothes but I am being who I like to be. He showed me I would still be loved even if I chose tomorrow to not wear make-up ever again. I would still be the same person tomorrow if I chose to wear sweatpants in public.
All of these “vanity” things that I was fearing for the day of surgery are not nonsense, it’s just me being afraid to be “naked” in front of people who aren’t even looking at that, they are looking at the me on the inside. The one who loves Jesus and life and my friends and my husband. The one who has overcome so many things in life and have more to face, is the person you see before you today. Am I still going to take care of me and how I look? Of course I am. Not because it’s what makes people love me but because it’s how I love myself. It’s not a cover up for me but a way to express my inner creativeness!
Dear Lord, thank You for the time I get to spend with You. I thank You for showing me who I am in a different light. Thank You for showing me that love is not about outward appearances but about the heart itself. I ask you to come into any brokenness that I may have left and show me You. Teach me to always be me and not what the world is expecting. Show me that Your love expands in me and that’s all that really matters is love.
In Jesus Name AMEN