In his book "Wisdom of the Heart" Alan Cohen begins his chapter entitled "The Truth About You" with this prayer: "Dear God, please help me to recognize the truth about myself..." Before I could finish what was printed on the page my mind filled in the rest of the sentence: "....just how awful I really am." But that's not what he wrote. His sentence ends: "no matter how beautiful it is."
No matter how much I grow in the Lord and accept His grace into my life it seems my "default" mode is to think of myself in unlovely terms. Is it so engrained in me--put there by neglect or experience? Too often we motivate children by dwelling on their faults and what will happen if they misbehave....which they inevitably do because they are not yet trained in the Truth. They're graded in school and ranked with their peers. How defeating it is if you're not the one on top! Then as adults we are constantly reminded we don't measure up in our relationships or our jobs or where we live or what car we drive, and on and on.
Cohen says, "Your truth is so magnificent that if you did look upon it, you'd find validation and inspiration to be all that you have the potential to be." When I wrote my year-long devotional book, "Freedom in Christ" in 2003 and then published as a Blog by the same name in 2011, I was searching for what for me was the elusive freedom Christ offers. My last entry ended with this thought: Like the eagle who trusts his life to the wind, I spread my wings and trust that God will sustain me as I am lifted from the ledge and soar with God.
I understand now it's as I spread my wings and trust my life to God that I experience freedom in Christ.
It is said that we often fear success more than failure. I think it has something to do with our not wanting to take responsibility for our lives. Too many of us just let things happen to us and then blame someone or something for our lot in life. I once read an author who claimed that the original sin wasn't disobedience but rather laziness. I think he may have a point. Adam and Eve's laziness in not consulting God first about the adversary's claims may very well have allowed their sin of arrogance to take root. If they'd just gone to God with the confusion they felt and had been set right by God about it, they would have saved us all a lot of grief! Not only did they not seek God first, they compounded their sin by hiding from God afterwards.
It is the same for me. If I would just go to my source--God--and acknowledge that I am made in His image and therefore am beautiful at my core, I would save myself a lot of grief. Because when I feel beautiful I do beautiful things. I am kind and gracious to others, wanting to share what I have, whether it's material possessions or love or spiritual truth. And I trust that God will meet my needs so I don't need to hoard or take. Instead I will seek all that is good and all that I need will come my way.
Father, the Truth is that we are all born with the capacity to be good in Your Eyes because of Jesus Christ....and it is only Your Eyes we need to be good in. With the Holy Spirit--Christ's presence in my life--I can do all the things You made me for....beautiful things.
Link to scripture: Romans 5:19
Take action: If you don't feel beautiful, all you need do is to remember Who you belong to....don't continue to hide from Him....