Monday, May 14, 2012

You Don't Know the Pain...

…the pain I have endured all these years, and I didn’t either…I didn’t realize the unnecessary burden that I carried day in and day out.  As I have committed to honesty, surrendered to Christ’s unearthing, cleansing and replanting, so many things have washed off my life – there were burdens I was carrying I never dreamed I’d have to live without…freedom, oh sweet freedom.

Today, our wonderful church, in honor of mother’s day, opened up a photo opportunity to take family photos and have them printed.  It was a one shot opportunity…something I used to dread.  In days and years past, a moment like this would have sent me fearful the bathroom for who knows how long trying to perfect myself for this picture.  As we were standing in line I would have been scrubbing my children’s faces and re-fixing their hair and feeling ashamed that I did not more carefully pick out our outfits or cut my husband’s hair or that I did not wash mine that morning.

Utter dread, panic, anxiety would have set it – it sounds crazy, I know, even as I write it I know it sounds nuts, but it was my life.  It was so real to me, and I thought that other people who did not do this did not care about their appearance or taking care of themselves at all.

And then, the worst moment of all – the moment the picture, the one shot opportunity, was printed.  I lifted up the picture, and….it looked like us.  Not the best family picture we’ve ever taken – Laurelei and Mason didn’t smile for us, but it was us.  And the sweetest most glorious moment – I looked at myself, not the best picture I’ve ever taken, I mean I didn’t wash my hair this morning and I still have some extra baby pounds that are showing on my face, but it was ok.

Somehow, today when I looked at that picture, I didn’t feel embarrassed.  I didn’t feel like this one still image captured the measure of my worth.  It was just one shot of my outward self – but my body is in motion and my worth is in the beauty that God has placed inside my heart.  I am His.  I am the bride of Christ.  The King is enthralled by my beauty (Psalm 45:11), and I am in love with my precious family.  It’s a pretty high expectation for a still photo to capture even the essence of that…something so rich and rare and precious.

You don’t know the pain that I endured for years…or maybe you do.  Maybe you are still enduring the pain.  Maybe it’s not pictures or appearances but wealth or degrees or anything other than the approval of God that you are settling for as the measure of your worth.  The good news – God is already in love with you – He already thinks you are amazing!  He sent His son to fill the gap so that we can have an intimate relationship – we don’t have to do anything but accept His Son, Jesus, and surrender to Him – it’s already been done for us.  Those things can never give you real worth, it’s only temporary, a one shot photo of a life in motion.

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