September 15, 2010 Defined By God | Shari Braendel
"The king is enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord." Psalm 45:11 (NIV)
Devotion: One word. Flabbergasted. That was the emotion I had coursing through my body as I sat at the coffee shop discussing my weight issues with a friend. I told her I had recently cut out certain foods from my diet, but was continuing to maintain my "happy weight," that number the scale just seems extremely happy to faithfully report whether I have eaten healthy and exercised that week or not. We had a good laugh as she described how sometimes she locks her scale away so she's not tempted to jump on it every day just to find out if she's still her same "happy" self.
As a result of this conversation I realized that if I am not careful I can easily allow the scale, or the mirror, to become a compass that shifts my focus and points me in the wrong direction. It seems illogical, yet at times I look to this digital device, or this earthly reflection to gauge my emotional status and essentially define me.
The Bible tells us that the God of the universe is enthralled with our beauty. Seriously? Yes, indeed! He thinks we are amazing and wonderful. Unfortunately, more often than not, we look in the mirror and only see our flaws; hair that's just a mite too frizzy; a tummy that's a bit too fluffy; and thighs that have a few too many dimples on them. My friend Renee likes to call her cellulite "the fingerprints of God." One time I shared that with a group of women, and one of them said, "Well then He must have REALLY big hands!"
So, what would life look like if we accepted God workmanship? Can you imagine how different we would feel about ourselves if we glanced in the mirror and told God "thank You for making me so wonderfully"? If you listen closely, I bet you would hear Him respond, "All beautiful, you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you" (Song of Solomon 4:7, NIV).
No matter your size or shape, the number on your clothes tag or your scale, you are beautiful! Let's embrace that we are fine just the way we are because if God says so, then it's true!
Dear God, thank You for making me the way I am. Please help me to have more confidence. I will practice defining myself through Your eyes and not my own. I am grateful, and humbled to be Your beautiful daughter, and I can feel Your approving gaze upon me. In Jesus' name, Amen.
Application Steps: Make a list of five things you really like about your outer appearance. When you find yourself in a funk, remember to define yourself through God's eyes. Accept a compliment with a smile and a thank you.
Reflections: When was the last time you gave yourself permission to treat yourself to something new? You are valuable to Him, and to those who love you. It is okay to take care of yourself too. Does my scale define me?
Psalm 139:14, "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." (NIV)
Song of Solomon 4:1, "How beautiful, you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful!" (NIV)
Ephesians 2:10, "We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." (NIV)
I will continue to run and accept this new body - that will never quite be the same, just like inside i am not the same ....
GRACE AND PEACE!