“Don’t forget to smile for pictures. And not that weird fake smile you do.”
What weird fake smile? I have a fake smile? Dad’s words shadow danced around me all day long. When picture time came, I smiled and hoped it was the right smile. The one he wanted. Because I wanted him to love me.
Love. It’s the one thing everyone wants. The one thing I so desperately need and yet, struggle and wrestle to actually FEEL it. To accept it. To keep it.
Because damaged goods means you’re unlovable.
At least that is the message we receive and take to heart from others.
And I can tell you that you’re wrong. I can tell you that you are so unbelievably loved that you can’t even imagine, but it will mean nothing coming from me.
It may not mean much coming from your spouse.
Or coming from your mom.
You may never believe you are lovable, until you let the Lord do the work in your heart and mind to change that perception.
The Lord will show you. He will tell you. He will break that chain of bondage that is like a noose around your neck.
But it’s going to take time and work.
I’ll be honest. I don’t always want to dive into the work. I don’t really want to do it. I don’t feel like doing it.
Until I pick up His word and actually do it, things won’t get better. My heart won’t change.
And I’m stuck in a vicious cycle of chasing others, trying to convince myself that maybe, just maybe I am loved by others. It might work for a short while, this feeling loved by other broken humans. But the heart stomp will come and we’ll be back on our faces, convinced we are unlovable because it’s what we know.
It’s the comfort zone of our lives. A shattered heart is our norm. It’s our measuring stick. It feels like home.
And it has got to stop.
There is one way to end it. Only one.
Throw the shards of your heart down at His feet and tell Him you need fixing. And when you start feeling unlovable again, go back and do it again. Because people might make you feel love momentarily, but God will love you enough to mend those broken pieces permanently.
Because friend, He loves you. You are worth loving. You are worth that smile. You are worth the breath in your lungs. You are worth knowing. You are worth the investment.
You are worth doing the work with Jesus.
And only He can convince you that you’re loved beyond all measure.
* Today, look up love in the bible. Dig in and write down anything the Lord lays on your heart. Pray over it. Claim it. Love yourself enough to do it. If you something really speaks to you, share it with me here. I want to hear all about it. Because my heart struggles too. Because I want more for you, for us. I pray that His love seeps down so deep into you that you can’t shake it. That you can’t convince yourself of anything else. Because we have to learn it. We have to know it. We have to.
*For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. Psalm 139:13. He chose you. He picked out everything that makes you, you.