As the snow is starting to leave in Alberta, Canada I see the beginnings of spring starting to come alive. I have been expecting the warm weather, and thinking about the flowers I hope to grow. I learned this week there are over 230,000 to 270,000 species of flowering plants according to David Bramwell (2002), each one beautiful and special in its own way. Do you know how special you are?
For years, I was desperately trying to bloom where I was planted to gain love and acceptance from others. In my world circumstances were never as they might have appeared, I was afraid if people saw the real me, they would not love or accept me. I hide behind a mask, which I called a smile, and I learned to become whatever I thought other people wanted me to be. You know, Perfect Mask—Perfect Life
Although I had a husband and family who loved me, my concept of love was flawed. I thought it had to be earned: If you were good, drove the right car, had the right friends, or joined the right country club, you were loved. If you did not have all those things, or were not in the right social group, you were not loved. I thought love and acceptance could be given and taken at a moment’s notice.
Do you step into the arena of life everyday wearing masks, striving for the right appearance and performing your best for love, acceptance, and approval? I have news for you.
God sees us without the masks and thinks we are beautiful, he loves and accepts us just the way we are, no conditions
Has anyone by fussing before the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? If fussing can’t even do that, why fuss at all? Walk into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They don’t fuss with their appearance—but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? …If God gives such attention to the wildflowers, most of them never even seen, don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? Luke 12: 25-28, the Message-
His love is forever, unchanging, and constant, it is unconditional!
Thank you for dropping by and sharing your time with me.
I would love to hear from you. Have a great week!
Related article:**All photos are Copyrighted © By Little Sister Snapshots, California
When I was little, I used to believe in the concept of one best friend, and then I started to become a woman. And then I found out that if you allow your heart to open up, God would show you the best in many friends.
One friend is needed when you’re going through things with your man. Another friend is needed when you’re going through things with your mom. Another when you want to shop, share, heal, hurt, joke, or just be.
One friend will say, “Let’s cry together,” another, “Let’s fight together,” another, “Let’s walk away together.”
One friend will meet your spiritual need, another your shoe fetish, another your love for movies, another will be with you in your season of confusion, another will be your clarifier, another the wind beneath your wings.
But whatever their assignment in your life, on whatever the occasion, on whatever the day, or wherever you need them to meet you with their gym shoes on and hair pulled back, or to hold you back from making a complete fool of yourself … those are your best friends.
It may all be wrapped up in one woman, but for many, it’s wrapped up in several… one from 7th grade, one from high school, several from the college years, a couple from old jobs, on some days your mother, on some days your neighbor, on others, your sisters, and on some days, your daughters.
So whether they’ve been there 20 minutes or 20 years, you are blessed. God has placed these women in your life to love, encourage and help you make a difference. ~ Author unknown
The Bible says: This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us, greater love hath no man than this that a man lays down his friends.
Where would we be without those dear sisters we call Girlfriends. The ones we laugh with, cry with, and shop with. Our mother’s, sisters and friends who encourage, teach, and help us to become better women.
When I hit a wall, I became overwhelmed, and start looking at all the circumstances and stress in my life, I forgot about all the good things. My cup becomes half-empty, instead of full. As I had time to meditate and look back, I realized how God has led me with His love and faithfulness over the years. Jesus Christ, is my dearest friend, I could not imagine life without his peace, love and protection. He is all I need, He enough.
August has always been a stressful month for me. I am rushing to finish up all the loose ends before fall arrives. It is also an expensive month, with all the costs of getting the kids ready for school. New clothes, backpacks, supplies, and trying to get an extra weekend away before those school days, sports, and music lessons take over my life.
When my children were younger, I could take them to the store and buy their school supplies and clothes, and they were thrilled. However when they became teenagers, each one had their own distinctive fashion style. One of my daughters decided she didn’t want to wear Levi’s anymore; she wanted designer labeled jeans like everyone else. My husband, Lyle, wasn’t sure what designer was in, but he thought surely as long as it had a name on it, it would work.
While visiting a western-wear store, he found a sale on designer jeans: “Kenny Rogers” with the name and face embroidered on the back pocket. Wow, he thought he had hit the jackpot and bought two pair. He couldn’t wait to get home and show off his find.
I had a hard time keeping a straight face when he gave those “Designer Jeans” to our daughter. They say, “A picture is worth a 1000 words.” I wish I had that picture. She didn’t have the same enthusiasm that my husband had for those jeans, and she said, “I’m not wearing a picture of Kenny Rogers embroidered on my butt.” Who knew?
She never did wear those jeans, and two years later we packed them up and gave them away.
When I think back, I just laugh out loud thinking about those “Kenny Rogers” jeans. To be honest, I probably wouldn’t have worn them either.
My husband thought he was giving her a greatest gift, but she didn’t see those jeans as wonderful. How often I do the same with God. When he doesn’t give me what I want, or my struggles overwhelm me, I begin to doubt his love and promises.
Jeremiah 29: 11-14 states, ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen.
My plans are often complicated and stressful, I tend to over research and worry about every detail. It is such a relief to know that God has a plan for my life, and he cares about the details too. I am learning to trust in His plans and promises for my life, confidently embracing the hope and future he has planned for me.©
Do you find it hard to trust God in the in the hard times of your life?
What time of the year do you find the most stressful for you?
My self-image has always been a little distorted, so shopping for a bathing suit is a traumatic experience for me. I have spent extended lengths of times in the “chamber of horrors” (the fitting room) only to leave in tears, because I could not find anything that looked right. I would leave wishing I was taller, thinner, had a flatter stomach and no muffin top around my waist.
Occasionally I even toyed with the idea of a major overhaul, from top to bottom. You know the kind, where they pull everything up, starting at the knees. (Somehow the image of my navel in the middle of my forehead, has kept me taking the last step)
Do I put more emphases on what others think of me, instead of caring how God sees me? I think God must have a sense of humor, after all he made us.
Have you ever stood naked in front of a mirror and quoted Psalm 139: 14a, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Personally, I have not been able to get past the fearful!
Our confidence comes from knowing that God made us in his image, he knew what we would look like before we were ever born and loved us anyway.
The Bible says:
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Psalm 139: 13-16a
When he looks at us we are perfect in his eyes, he thinks each one is of us is unique and special. ©
When you step into the dressing room does your self-image take a nose dive? Would you rather avoid dressing rooms? I would love to hear your comments.
Every year when summer arrives I tell myself that this is the summer I am going to take it easy, relax and take time to smell the roses. However, when the summer ends, I need a vacation away from my vacation. I have on occasion toyed with the idea of booking a room at the retirement lodge for a month to recuperate: there I could sit uninterrupted in my rocking chair singing,”Blessed Quietness.” When your life feels out of control, have you ever felt like running away?
My life has been a roller coaster for the last two month, and when my to-do list hits overflow, I become overwhelmed. At this point, I feel guilty and decide not to look at my list any more. (No, I’m not feeling better yet) Throwing the to-do list away now becomes a real option. I could start a new list, and forget how far behind I am.
The problem is, I often cannot face failure of rejection. I would rather not try than risk failure. I want to see the big picture and know success is certain. However, nothing in life has guarantees. When financial prospects are bleak, job markets are uncertain, and health issues persist, it is easy to become overwhelmed with life. Sometimes, I wish God would send me an e-mail, or memo, as a quick reminder that he is still in control. Why is it so easy to trust God for other people’s needs, but when it comes to our own needs we don’t have much faith? Isn’t God enough to take care of all our needs, big and small?
Psalm 46:1-2 says,”God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. so we will not fear, even if earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. He is my strength, and light in a troubled world, I will not fear?
Father, I choose your strength, love and promise, I will not fear as long as you walk with me lighting my way. I choose to trust you.
“Laughter is an instant Vacation.” ~ Milton Berle