My heart hurt the first time I heard him say it.
How could he know God loved him in his head and not be able to fully grasp it in his heart?
I couldn’t understand it . . . at first –
After diving deeper in the conversation I learned he never knew good touch by his father.
His father never spent time with him.
His father never told him he was proud of him.
And his father never told him he loved him.
Because of those circumstances he just could not grasp how very much our Creator adored him.
At that moment, my heart began breaking for the man before me.
It became and continues to be my fervent prayer that God would show him how much He loves him and adores him.
In my personal wresting with this, trying to comprehend how in the world someone could believe something in their head and know what scriptures says but not believe it in their own heart, the Holy Spirit decided to put me in check.
“You don’t believe you are valuable, Stacey.”
“You don’t believe you are worthy of my love. Stacey.”
“You don’t believe you are beautiful. Stacey”
“You don’t believe you are incredible. Stacey”
“So what’s the difference between what he is struggling with and what you are struggling with? You both know these things through scripture but because you have been traumatized with rejection your entire life and given false definitions of love and success, you believe you have no value. Why do you think it is so important to you to build other women up? To tell them they are valuable. To tell them they are beautiful. To give hugs and gentle touches so they know good touch. To speak words of life over them. You do that because you don’t ever want another woman to believe about herself what you believe to be true about yourself.”
Gosh Lord, it’s like you know me – how can I argue with that?
The same way I have been praying for my precious husband – for God to show him how much He adores him, is how I began to pray for myself – that God would allow me to see myself how He sees me. Now satan tried to scare me on that one because let’s face it, our Lord sees the inside deepest parts of our souls and sometimes that can be nasty dirty, but I know God wants me free from the lies that have held me captive for 46 years so I have continued to pray that simple prayer, “Lord, Let me see myself how you see me. Show me through your eyes.”
Since I began praying that prayer God would opened my eyes to even more heartache though.
Maybe you can relate?
You too know what scripture says about you – that you are fearfully and wonderfully made, that God has created you for a purpose and that it is a good purpose, that you are the apple of His eyes, that you are beautiful, that you were on His mind when He was on the cross, that YOU were worth dying for – and yet you can’t fully grasp that in your heart either because you too have been exposed to the sexism and the ugliness of the world.
Fear of rejection and lack of control fuel your mind and body.
And you hurt.
So you stuff it down a little more and throw on that fake smile and plaster on that make up to cover the pain and you keep telling yourself and others, “I”m fine,” but it really isn’t fine, is it?
Oh my friend, our God is a big – BIG – God. He can take your pain. He wants us – you – to be free of the hurts of our past.
I attended a recent speaker’s training conference and we had to give a five minute speech that would be recorded so we could promote ourselves for speaking opportunities. One of the speeches was on self worth and how women compare themselves to others.
My how she nailed it.
In fact, much of what she said was in my speech but when I got up there I forgot half of it – no lie – but God arranged it so I would be the recipient of His word that morning.
The word God had given her was magnificent.
He wanted all His girls to know they were magnificent.
We sat in pairs, looking each other in the eyes and spent a few moments speaking words of life over our partner.
But then – then – she did the unthinkable.
She had us speak them over ourselves.
And I couldn’t do it.
Instead, I cried. I felt like my heart was coming out of my throat.
On my ride home from the conference the Lord decided to bring that word back up. He wanted me to say it, so much that He began to drive me nuts over it.
My response, “Fine, I will say it but it doesn’t mean I believe it.”
“I. Am. Magnificent.”
“Whew. Okay – that wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, but just because I said it doesn’t mean I believe it, Lord.”
(God wants us to be honest with Him ladies. He wants us to come to the Throne of Grace boldly and cast our heart at His feet – I go to Him with everything – and He wants you to go to Him with everything too. It’s okay to be honest with our Creator. It truly is freeing.)
There have been several times He has prompted me to say “that word” since the conference.
What He is putting in to fruition what it coming – He is preparing me, massaging my heart muscle to be free from the lies I have believed all my life.
I was reminded of a quote by Manley Beasley that my pastor has used several times,
Faith is counting it as if it is,
when it is not so,
in order that it may be so.
In my prayers I have also been praying, “Lord, help my unbelief.” Not only for myself, but my husband, and for you.
It is my heart’s desire that you know you are beautiful.
It is my heart’s desire that you know you are loved.
It is my heart’s desire that you know you are of great value to our Lord and to me.
It is my heart’s desire for us to be free – free from rejection, hurt, anger, and unforgiveness.
We can only do that through Him.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1
Many years ago I was struggling with forgiving myself. Let’s face it, I hurt a lot of people. I was a new believer in Christ and I fell right in to the trap satan laid before me. I believed if I forgave myself for all the horrible things I had done, not only to myself, but my daughter, my family, other people’s marriages, and more that I would be justifying what I did. That I would be saying what I did was okay. Through a period of time where I lived in heavy bondage, I finally reached out and asked some tough questions. The answer I received was used to set me free.
“If you say you can’t be forgiven for your sins then you are calling God a liar because scripture says you are forgiven.”
I walked in freedom that day – I learned to reject satan’s lies that day.
Do you see the parallel though to that story and this story of self worth?
For us to say that we are not loved, that we are not beautiful, that we are not valuable, that we are not important – well – we are calling God a liar.
And it’s not God that is a liar – it’s Satan – and he presents himself in many forms – the biggest – as fear.
Today, and every day, I want you to tell yourself – whatever it is you are not believing about yourself what God says about you – whether it’s about His love, His grace, how He adores you, maybe you don’t believe God could truly use you – or maybe you need to not only know but believe you too, are magnificent – speak it out. Even if you don’t believe it at first, just get comfortable saying it. And one day, I know you will believe it because God is going to begin massaging that heart muscle of yours just like He is mine.
In this song, fear is referred to as “he”.
He is referring to satan. His very name means division – if he can divide our hearts then he has separated us from truth.
Father, set us free today. Help our unbelief’s. Give us courage to speak words of life into our own hearts, not as an arrogance, but as a masterpiece of you. Let your fire fall and love be all we hear. Quicken our spirits. Forgive us Lord, for believing the lies of satan. We want to be free. Cast us free. Set us free. Amen.