It’s Narcissist Friday!
13 For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. 14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. 15 My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them. 17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! 18 If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You.
From the beginning, you were beautiful. A unique creation of the loving God. His plans for you have always been good. It is not arrogant or improper to think of yourself the way God thinks of you. David wrote these words fully knowing sin’s destructive influence on his mind and body. Still, he believed that he was “fearfully and wonderfully made.” You must know this truth as well.
Somehow the lie came to tell you that you were not beautiful. It usually comes two ways. First, it comes from the inner sense that something is wrong. The whole world feels this. Things are not good, not right. That which was beautiful is no longer. So the world seeks to mold every individual to a shape that reflects that brokenness. But then the church has come to affirm the world’s perspective. Because of sin, the church says, nothing is beautiful. Even little babies are born in corruption and ugliness, according to some. There is no innocence, no loveliness, no beauty.
That set up a dissonance in you. To think of yourself as less than beautiful was not right. God loves you, and says you are beautiful in His eyes. But to think of yourself as beautiful seemed wrong. Sin has damaged you, scarred or deformed you, so that you are ugly. How can you accept the Lord’s view of you when the world’s view is so contrary? Especially when the church sides with the world?
Then the liar comes. The abuser tells you enticing things because they are things you want desperately to hear. You open yourself to his control because of that dissonance between what you think of yourself and what he says. But then he changes his words and destroys you little by little as he affirms and builds on what you have believed, the lie. He knows that you do not believe you are beautiful, but he also knows the pain of that thought in your heart.
The only way to stand strong against the liar and abuser is to look to the Lord’s love. He sees in you that “pearl of great price” He bought. He desires you and wants you with Him forever. Just as you are.
Just as I am? The old song used at so many evangelistic crusades called people to Jesus without asking them to try to fix themselves first. Why? Not because there was nothing to fix. Not because sin had no effect. But in spite of all that. Within you, no matter what you look like or feel like, is the image of the living and loving God. You are that beautiful one His heart loves.
So, thank Him for your beauty. I know that sounds strange, even somehow wrong. It will, but it is not wrong. It is right, and you stand against the world and the liar when you proclaim the beauty God sees in you. Every day, affirm the truth God says about you. There is no arrogance, no boasting, no pride, in speaking truth that connects to the Lord’s heart.
When you are sad, when others are cruel, when you feel alone and unwanted, shout the truth of your beauty. Tell the darkness that you are beautiful and desirable because the Lord, the only One who really matters, loves you. When you feel ugly and unworthy, tell yourself that your beauty lies in the eyes of the Beholder. He who looks on you with love in His heart sees a beauty that you may not see. But it is there.
And, of course, when you look at others (remembering the truth about yourself) you should remind yourself that they are beautiful as well. Even those who have not come to Jesus for salvation have a hidden beauty God desires. They are made in His image just like you.
The day will come when we will be in the presence of God as a community of believers, and we will see the love in His eyes for each one of us. Then we will understand and believe that it is His love that has made us beautiful.