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Ugly, Ugly, Ugly

Lam 3:21-26

Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD’S great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion;" therefore I will wait for him.”  The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him,to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.  

 

  It had been a rough few days…and this morning was not starting out much better. I had been in pain bad enough all weekend that I had gone no where except one short trip in the car. I didn’t feel like going anywhere, and I didn’t want to talk to anyone. There’s something about having to lie down and stay home enduring pain that makes me feel very ugly--inside and out.

   I was supposed to go to Julie’s house for lunch today. We hadn’t seen each other in weeks, and she had called last week (before I started hurting) and asked me to come to lunch. Never mind that she always fixed a special treat and always had some Godly wisdom to share with me.. I did not want to go ANYWHERE today! I especially did not want to go and be nice. I didn’t feel nice. As I said, I felt ugly, inside and out. As I walked outside waiting for my dog to finish her ritual of circling the entire yard before doing her “job,” I looked at all the piles that needed to be cleaned up. “That’s what I feel like-- a pile of stinky dog do-do!” I thought about cleaning the yard up, but glanced at my watch and decided there just wasn’t time. As I walked inside, I actually told God I didn’t want to go to Julie’s, but I didn’t want to let her down either, so could He please have her call and cancel? Imagine my surprise when immediately the phone rang, and as I raced to catch it before the answering machine caught it, and saw Julie’s number on the caller ID! “Thanks, God,” I managed to whisper as I answered.

“Hi!” came her perky voice! “What do you want, lasagna or tuna salad stuffed tomato?”

Talk about caught off guard! “Um….” I stuttered as my mouth began to water. She insisted I decide, so I went for the salad, knowing how she always had a treat with them! Amazing how fast my attitude changed. I still felt ugly and hoped she wouldn’t be put off by how I looked, even though I had tried to get my hair to cooperate for a change. So, off I went, licking my lips in anticipation, and this time I prayed God would help me open my heart and mind to what He would say to me through her this visit. I can’t honestly say my attitude was better, but I was willing for it to be better.

Julie met me at her door… looking gorgeous as always. She was still fixing the lunch, so we talked in her kitchen while she finished…. My attitude changing rapidly as I focused on her and catching up on what had happened in her life since we had last seen each other. Her father had passed away during that time, just as she had gotten there to visit . She told me about going through his things and what she had kept as mementos, and took me outside to show me some of his rock collection she was using to decorate her patio . Then when we went back inside I kept looking at 2 objects sitting on her counter on a paper towel. Surely they weren’t what they looked like! I was listening to her, yet glancing at the objects. They weren’t changing, and yes, they looked just like 2 little pile of dog doo-doo!! Maybe it was just because I’d focused on that as a visual picture of myself just a few moments before that? No….they were definitely NOT part of lunch fare! Finally, I couldn’t take it any more, and I asked her what they were. She got tears in her eyes as she looked at me!

“OK, these are what God told me to give you today,” she answered, as she picked them up. “I asked God to tell me what I could say to you today, and He told me this.” Mind you, she had NO idea how I had been feeling! “God says, that this is what you see yourself as--- ugly and undesirable…” (How did she know that!….Never mind… God knew!) Then she turned them over and inside the ugly rocks were multitudes of crystals!! They were geodes, not piles of Doggy do! “This is how God sees you. This is how your friends see you. You are beautiful and prized!” These were part of her father’s collection, and as she handed one to me she said, “This one is for you to keep, and be reminded every day how valuable you are in God’s eyes, no matter how you think you look on the outside.” I had no words… just tears. How God had dealt with me was so tender and so like Him!

Even when we feel useless and ugly, He comes and reminds us of His love for us. His love isn’t dependant on our good attitudes anymore than it is on our good looks. He alone sees our hearts, our potential, and our value. He knows when we get down and need lifted up. Whether our pain is physical or emotional, He knows and cares enough to tenderly touch our hearts. And He does it in the way only He can-- in His mysterious ways. I am so thankful He doesn’t listen to what I say about who I am, but instead, patiently listens, and when I am willing to listen, He supplies my need. What an awesome God!

 

 

By the way-- the lunch was delicious! And there was cherry cheesecake for dessert- my favorite!

 

Psalm 91:14-15; 103:11; Jer 31:3


Oh, Father, how we thank you for your everlasting and unconditional love of us!  We praise you and bow in awe before you!  Let us learn to see ourselves in your eyes alone, and become blind and deaf  to the lies the enemy tries to tell us about ourselves.  Use us as you used Julie- to bless others and to share Your message of love.  Forgive us for the times we listen to the enemy and begin to hate our very lives.  May we see each moment of each day a special blessing from You, and may we be willing vessels for Your love and service!

In Jesus' precious name I pray, Amen>




 

 

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