Thursday, July 29, 2010

Back to the beginning

Growing up, I was always very self-conscious.  About my looks.  About my intelligence (or in my mind, a lack of).  About my ability to offer anything to anyone.  Low self-esteem?  That was an understatement.  I hated myself.  I hated how I looked and how my voice sounded.  In my mind, I was ugly and stupid and no one would ever want to marry me.  It didn't matter what anyone else said.  That is how I viewed myself.  Some days, I still see myself that way.  It's a constant struggle for me.  20+ years later, I can now hear a compliment and politely say thank you, instead of saying "Yeah right" and then wondering what that person's motives are.  But that doesn't mean I believe it.  I believe that the person giving the compliment means what they are saying, but I don't see myself that way.  When I look in the mirror, I see an overweight, sad woman who will never be beautiful, and who will never be good enough.  I haven't learned to see myself as God sees me.  Some days I think that I never will.  I can take anything in the Bible at face value, except the parts that talk about how God sees us.  I believe that it applies to everyone...except me.  It's flawed, messed up thinking.  I know this.  I know that it is not healthy.  And yet, it is where I am.

I felt like it was important to share that, as it will play a large part of this story.  I'm insecure and while I don't hate myself anymore, I still believe the lies in the mirror.  I believe it when Satan whispers "You're ugly."  And when he says "You'll never be good enough."  and "You are nothing." 

And I feel like it is also important to tell you that I don't have all the answers.  I don't have the sure-fire way to overcome anything.  While I want to help others, it won't be because I have learned over the years HOW to be strong and stand firm in the face of trials.  Because the truth is, I haven't even come close to learning that.  But I will not underestimate for a second the power of sharing my heart with others.  You all have shown me by your comments and emails (THANK YOU!) that what I have to share is important and that God will use it.  Reading your kind comments and hearing some of your stories in your emails has been such a blessing and an incredible source of comfort for me.

So many of you have called me brave.  I don't feel brave.  I'm terrified.  But I know that I am being obedient to God in this endeavor and for now, it's enough.

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