Every morning I wake to the sound of doves cooing outside my patio window. I have lived in this house for six years and have never given these birds much thought. Yet today, their significance astounds me. Every morning God sends a faithful reminder of the peace that surrounds my home and my heart. Every morning I get a glimpse of the child He nurtured during a time of pain and destruction, and the woman he is gently restoring back to wholeness and healing.
When I was growing up, I lived in a home filled with hateful words, hateful hands, and hateful memories. I enjoyed going to school just to escape the turmoil that constantly embraced me. My house was an angry, bitter environment and if there were any doves around back then, they certainly did not bring peace to my existence. I made bad choices to justify the life I had been given and did stupid things that I am not proud of. By all accounts, it is a miracle that I did not wind up dead or in prison. Somehow, God saw fit to have more patience than I deserved and spared me from further damnation.
This morning I am reminded how patient He was, silently drawing me to himself. Back when I felt utterly insignificant and unworthy, Jesus saw something beautiful. When I could not see a single thing about myself that was attractive, God saw something extraordinary. The fascinating thing is, after all this time, God is still patiently waiting for me to get a clue. I find it no small coincidence that our women’s Bible study is doing a new lesson on becoming a daughter of the King. In the first two chapters, we are called to name those things that we find ugly about ourselves and confess that they are lies from the pits of Hell. After we do that, we are asked to make a list of every quality that we find beautiful about ourselves. The idea is to begin to get a picture of the vision that God sees when He looks at us every day.
When a person has been spoon-fed negativity their entire life, it becomes extremely difficult to accept the compliments that others offer out of love. As Julia Roberts once said, “The bad stuff is always easier to believe.” What if I chose to believe the good stuff anyway? What if I chose to accept that the creator of the universe found me beautiful as a child, and He continues to see me that way despite the lies of the enemy? What if I embraced the calling He has on my life instead of running from it out of fear or discouragement? God believed I was worthy back then, and He still does today. What is holding me back?
Just for today, I think I will choose to see what God sees. I will look in the mirror and thank Him for every wrinkle, every gray hair, and every pound that stares back at me. (Well, I might thank Him a little less for those 30 pounds I could lose). Those imperfections remind me of the perfect love of God. The God that I serve knows the many miles I have traveled, the tears I have cried, and the loss I have faced just to be close to Him. My imperfections are perfect because they are proof that unlike so many, I have truly lived my life and have not ceased to continue fighting for the things I believe in. I am whole, alive, and full of grace and purpose because God created me this way. Just for today, I think I might embrace these words and try to believe them and live by them. The lies of the enemy are silenced today. I choose to believe that I am worthy, if only for today.