Who Does God Say I Am?

In a world of confusion, comparison, insecurity, identity crisis, and anxiety, it is easy to fall prey to the lie that we are not enough. Not good enough. Not pretty enough. Not smart enough. Not talented enough. Not independent enough. Not aggressive enough. Not busy enough. Not enough.

It is easy to become down on oneself and feel the strain of desperately trying to please everyone and earn their love and respect.

It can be easy to feel unwanted and unqualified, hopeless and alone.

This burden is extremely heavy to bear. It’s stifling and suffocating and wounding.

But the truth is, we were never meant to look to the world and ask: “Who am I?” We were always meant to look to our immortal and all-wise Creator and ask humbly and trustfully: “Who am I?”

If we look to His precious Word, this is what we find:

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He (Jesus) says that He loves me as His Father loves Him. I am fully and deeply loved.

John 15:9

“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.

Zephaniah 3:17

17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

Romans 5:5

Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

John 3:16

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

lady grace 1

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He says I am “fearfully and wonderfully made” – that His work in making me is “marvelous”. I am beautiful.

Psalm 139:14

14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.

Song of Solomon 4:7

You are all fair, my love,
And there is no spot in you.

Psalm 144:12

12 That our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth;
That our daughters may be as pillars,
Sculptured in palace style;

Isaiah 44:24

24 Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer,
And He who formed you from the womb:
“I am the Lord, who makes all things,
Who stretches out the heavens all alone,
Who spreads abroad the earth by Myself;

lady grace 2

***

He says that there is “now no condemnation for me” and I will not be put to shame. I can walk in confidence.

Romans 8:1-4

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the SpiritFor the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

Psalm 34:5-7

They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.
This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him,
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him,
And delivers them.

lady grace 3

***

He says I am set high above the Enemy’s schemes and lies, and have His Holy Spirit within me. I have power.

Ephesians 1:19-21

19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.

2 Corinthians 5:17-18

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation,

1 John 2:20

20 But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things.

Philippians 4:11-13

11 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

lady grace 4

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He says that He calls me His child and He is my everlasting Father. I am His cherished daughter.

1 John 3:1

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!

Isaiah 9:6

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Deuteronomy 33:27

27 The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;

2 Corinthians 6:18

18 “I will be a Father to you,
And you shall be My sons and daughters,
Says the Lord Almighty.”

Romans 8:15-17

15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.

lady grace 5

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He says not to fear – that I can be fully confident in my trust of Him because He has overcome the world, and I belong to Him. I can be fearless.

Psalm 23:4

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

John 14:27

27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

Isaiah 43:1

But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name;
You are Mine.

Psalm 27:1

The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?

John 16:33

33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

lady grace 6

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He says I am forgiven and made clean through faith in Christ Jesus. I am pure.

Psalm 51:7

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Ephesians 1:4

just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,

Colossians 1:22

yet now He has reconciled 22 in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight— 

lady grace 7

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He says I am a temple of God – chosen and special – and and I am His workmanship. I’m secure and can walk with my head held high. I am valuable and worthy of respect.

1 Corinthians 3:16

16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people,

Matthew 10:29-31

29 Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Ephesians 2:10

10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

lady grace 8

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He says that nothing can snatch me from His hand, and that He will present me blameless on Judgement Day. I am saved.

John 10:27-30

27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30 I and My Father are one.”

Jude 1:24

24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,

Romans 10:8-13

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

lady grace 9

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He says He knows my days, sees when I sit and when I rise up, and delights in guiding all my steps! I am seen and cared for.

Luke 12:22-32

22 Then He said to His disciples, “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on. 23 Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing.24 Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds? 25 And which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 26 If you then are not able to do the least, why are you anxious for the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28 If then God so clothes the grass, which today is in the field and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?

29 “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. 30 For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. 31 But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you.

32 “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

Psalm 103:13-14

13 As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
14 For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we are dust.

Psalm 37:23-24

23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord,
And He delights in his way.
24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down;
For the Lord upholds him with His hand.

lady grace 10

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He says that my design as a female is good. My femininity is beautiful and filled with purpose.

Genesis 1:26-28

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

Genesis 2:18 & 21-24

18 And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”

21 And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. 22 Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.

23 And Adam said:

This is now bone of my bones
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man.”

24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

Proverbs 31:25 & 29-31

25 Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She watches over the ways of her household,

29 “Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
And let her own works praise her in the gates.

lady grace 11

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He says I am an important part of the Body. My personality, gifts, and passions are unique and needed.

1 Corinthians 12:15-26

15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling? 18 But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased. 19 And if they were all one member, where would the body be?

20 But now indeed there are many members, yet one body. 21 And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. 23 And those members of the body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty, 24 but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it, 25 that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. 26 And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.

Romans 12:4-8

For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

lady grace 12

 

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He says He knew me before I was born and that I am fully known. He understands me better than I understand myself.

Jeremiah 1:5

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;

1 Corinthians 13:12

Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

Isaiah 49:15-16

15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child,
And not have compassion on the son of her womb?
Surely they may forget,
Yet I will not forget you.
16 See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands;
Your walls are continually before Me.

Psalm 71:6

By You I have been upheld from birth;
You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb.
My praise shall be continually of You.

lady grace 13

Life Updates and a Poem

Hello, my lovely readers! I know, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted … I’ve missed quite a few Tuesdays and Saturdays! Part of that is because my life has been so busy – helping my family remodel a house, organizing, packing, babysitting, applying for jobs, moving in, getting sick … I haven’t had a whole lot of time to just sit and think of something to write to you all. Haven’t had a lot of inspiration lately.

But I’m now getting over being sick with a sinus infection and pink eye (which started out as a cold over a week ago) and feeling much better, physically. Also feeling more settled and calm, now that my family and I are finally in our new house!

So I wrote a poem this morning! 🙂 Now, I am not very good at writing poems. I only write them occasionally, when I’m feeling deeply about something and just have to get my feelings out somehow … so I scribble them down on paper. I haven’t been writing stories lately, or even journaling, but I have slipped into a poem-writing season, I guess.

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  • I’ve been thinking about love. What is love? What does it mean to love, truly? How can we feel perfectly loved?
  • I’ve been thinking about God. Why do we struggle to trust Him at times? Why do we keep running to everything but Him? Why do we cry out so desperately to Him to give us love in all these other shapes and forms, when He’s offering us Himself?

At my Bible study, on Sunday evening, one of the other ladies said something that kind of inspired this poem. She said something along the lines of: God wants to give us the absolute best … so He gives us Himself.

So here’s my poem. It’s definitely not perfect, probably not even proper (I’m not well-studied in the art of writing poems), but bear with me and try to get the overall message, anyway, even if you can’t see the poetry of it. 😉

Come to Me

Why are you running, child?

Running from Me?

Where are you going?

What is it you seek?

 

You’re confused and afraid

Too scared to trust

You don’t know the way

But you won’t let Me lead.

Dear child, be still

Don’t you know it’s Me you need?

 

You’re searching for love

You’re chasing the high

You grasp and you covet

And then you ask, “Why?”

Why isn’t my heart happy now?

Why hasn’t this person satisfied me?

Why do I need more—what haven’t I found?

Where can happiness possibly be?

 

Child, you ask, “Why me?

Why am I alone and unloved?”

But I say, “Come to Me

Let Me fill you up.”

Your heart was made for My love

Let me give you Myself

Your soul was made for heaven above

Child, only in Me can you know true love.

 

Heaven is your home,

Not somewhere unknown.

Eternity is My promise to you, dear

Not something to fear.

So when the Enemy whispers lies

Dark—in your ear

Come to Me, precious child

Let My Word drown out your fear.

 

Come to Me

Come deeper still

Rest in my love freely

Let Me show you My will

My yoke is easy, My burden is light

I do not oppress you

Don’t take to flight

That’s the Enemy’s tactic

To harass and to shame you

My love is gentle—believe it

It’s that of a Father, unconditional and true

 

Come to Me, Child

I want you to know Me

Come and find

My love, divine

Everything else

Will leave you empty

Let Me tell you this, Child

Tell you gently

Seeking Me and My love

Is the only way

Let Me show you My love

Come here to stay

And then you will have

Everything.

© Shantelle Mary

 

I might share some more of my attempts at poetry in the near future – just to share a little of my heart and hope you can relate! 🙂

Have a blessed day, dear friends! ❤

28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30

Run to His Arms

run to his arms

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9

27 The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;
He will thrust out the enemy from before you,

Deuteronomy 33:27

First thing to look at in these verses. No terror allowed, friends. No discouragement. Your Father is the great God of all—King of Kings—you should not fear. Should not be depressed.

Not to say that we as believers don’t fear and become depressed at times. It does happen. I’ve struggled majorly with fear, and a bit with depression as well. But the point is … it’s not like this natural thing that we just have to deal with. God doesn’t want us to be terrified or discouraged. He knows how it harms us. So He’s saying, “I’m here, child. Run to Me and find peace and comfort in My arms. I will fight for you.”

I think depression and irrational anxiety are two of Satan’s tactics to bring believers down. Especially, perhaps, when they’re doing great things for the Lord! Satan hates us, because we are on God’s side!

Sometimes I feel like … “God, I’m finally growing closer to You, and becoming a better prayer warrior, and my fantasy story is coming together—I think it will bring glory to You … And now is when I’m all suddenly dealing with this crazy fear and just listless hopelessness? Why?

Then it dawns on me. Of course! Of course Satan doesn’t want me to grow closer to God. He doesn’t want me to bring glory to God. Or pray for others. So the Enemy strikes me where I’m weakest. And somehow I believe his dark lies time and again. If you read Silver Rose, maybe you’ll understand why Karalee (main character) is the way she is … because her author happened to have those same, very real struggles! :p

Anyway. We are in a battle. Don’t forget that. Or you may succumb to that fear and depression, because you don’t realize you’re supposed to be fighting. –Don’t realize that there’s hope. And that God wants to help you.

Next time you hear those dark whispers, RUN to God! Run to His everlasting arms! Definitely don’t isolate yourself. Read the Bible even when you don’t feel it’s speaking to you. Pray, even when your soul feels dry and faithless. Talk about your struggles to fellow believers who will encourage you and just hold you up.

person-371015_1920(found on Pixabay.com)

I once heard this profound thing that just stuck with me: “Even when your heart can’t feel it, even when your mind can’t believe it, move forward in obedience anyway.” Keep moving in faith. Even when you can’t feel it.

And remember, God is here. And the victory is ours through Him.

 

** Originally published on Between the Pages of This Bookish Life, April 24th, 2015 **

Insecure.

insure

Insecurity. Shame. Self-Hate. Fear. Depression. Worthlessness.

It’s suffocating, isn’t it? That feeling that we’ll never be good enough. That we’re worthless. That life has no hope for us. Those dark lies whispered into our ears, snuffing out our light …

You will never be worthy of a godly husband. Who would want you? You’re too much work—too much of a mess.

Stop being so arrogant! Get your face back in the dirt, girl! As if God values you and has a future for you.

Your future is dark. You’ll never get where you want to be. God doesn’t really hear you. You may as well curl up in the corner and waste away.

You’re not good enough, because you don’t have a job. Look at all those hard workers out there. They’re so good. You, however, are pretty much useless to your family.

Ugh. You’re so stupid. Why did you say that? Why did you do that? When are you ever going to get it right, you idiot??

Remember all those dark and awful things you did in your past? You scum of the earth. If people really knew who you are, they wouldn’t accept and love you.

Look at you. You’re ugly. You need to lose weight. Why would that man want you? He could have so many better girls!

You’re a horrible mother. You’re wrecking your own children. Your house is a mess. You’re tired and depressed every day. You’ll never get things right. You’ll never do anyone any good.

You think your gift is writing? Actually, your stories are stupid. You’re wasting your time. You’re not serving God or others.

You are so shy, and dumb, and socially awkward. Nobody even likes hanging out with you. They don’t want to talk to you. They don’t want to sit by you. You annoy them. Just go away.

The list could go on and on. I’ve struggled with listening to most of these lies.

When I was about twelve/thirteen years old, I was convinced that I was overweight. I didn’t want to visit my family and friends out of state because I was certain they wouldn’t like me anymore. I would get depressed when around girls thinner then me—feeling this irrational shame and less-than-ness. Even to this day, I can be pretty insecure about how I look. And it’s a hard thing when you feel like you’re just not beautiful.

Around the same age, I fell into a deep and dark season of doubting God. I knew, somewhere in my soul, that He was there, but I was afraid that because of my doubting He would send me to hell if I died. And I feared the end of the world would come before I stopped doubting.

For years, I struggled with tying my worth to how hard and how much I worked. Around thirteen, I actually remember thinking that my parents probably didn’t love me that much. Why would they? I was a stupid, moody teenager who didn’t do much work around the house when it came down to it. Just some hand-washing dishes a couple times a day.

As I got older and still to this day, I struggle with ever feeling like enough for a godly husband. I have health issues, and emotional problems, and deal with irrational fear and anxiety. Who would want me? I’m nothing special. Nothing sets me apart. I’m boring, awkward, and silly.

I feel bad about past mistakes. Sometimes shame consumes me, and I feel like all my wrongdoings of the past define me. It’s who I am. I’ll never be able to leave it behind. If people really knew . . .

All this stuff . . . it just gets you feeling so low you wonder if you can ever rise again. I’m sure you readers can add your struggles to the list. The dark lies you hear daily.

We, as human beings, struggle and struggle and struggle with insecurity. And the world tries to give us tips like:

  • Just be you!
  • Have confidence in yourself!
  • Look in the mirror and say: “I love you. You are beautiful.”
  • You rock just the way you are!
  • Shake it off!!

And some of this stuff could have some merit. (Most of it sounds silly in the light of our monstrous burden of insecurity). But while it can have us soaring high for a few days, it never seems to keep us on the top of the mountains, because the world also tells us:

Skinny is beautiful. Don’t you see the models? They have thigh gaps, tiny waists, and long, thin legs. You need to be that way, and here’s how you can do it.

Stop being so meek and modest. You must be sexy, brash, and bold if you ever want love.

You don’t go to college? Don’t have a job? No boyfriend? Excuse me, child? You’re messed up – got it all wrong.

What?? You’ve never been kissed? Believe in saving sex until marriage? What is your problem? You’re definitely never going to get the beautiful marriage you think you will. You’ll probably end up an old maid.

And yeah. We fall back in the same old insecurity. Because we’re “too fat”, or we’re “too thin”. Or we’re different—we stand up for purity and modesty and godliness, and people think we’re ridiculous. Or we see all the perfectly clean houses and happy, loving mother-children relationships of our friends on Facebook, and feel like a failure. Or we have high standards for romantic relationships, and feel worthless because we’re not dating yet—nobody’s even asked.

And we feel like everybody is telling us: “Yeah right. In your dreams. You’ll just never get it. You gotta be better. You’ll never be good enough.”

“You. Will. Never. Measure. Up.”

Suffocating.

And then we look in the mirror and try to tell ourselves, “I love you. You’re beautiful. You can do it.”?

Forget it!!!

Who believes that in the midst of the world’s nasty taunts and the Enemy’s even uglier lies that bombard us?

Are you tired of trying to believe all on your own? I certainly am. So if you are, then join me. We need a new plan of confidence and finding our worth.

It starts with:

Look to your Creator and His Word.

  • God made you.

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

29 And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. 30 Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so. 31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Genesis 1:26-31

13 For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.

Psalm 139:13:16

19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

The Almighty God created you. He crafted you and your inmost parts. He designed your talents, your desires, your dreams, you future. He made YOU a temple of the Holy Spirit when you accepted Him.

People, this is huge! Imagine an unimaginable, holy, high Being taking dust gently into His big, loving hands, and precisely and purposefully forming YOU.

Readers, God made you.

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  • God saved you.

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

John 3:16

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Ephesians 2:8-9

11 You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11

13 He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love,

Colossians 1:13

But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

2 Peter 3:8-10

13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Romans 10:13

The Creator of the Universe, the one true God, the mightiest and holiest Being … He sent His ONLYBELOVED Son to die for you. He was bruised, and beaten, and killed so that YOU MIGHT HAVE LIFE. And not just life, but abundant life! And eternity!

The Bible says the greatest love is laying down your life for someone else. Wouldn’t you agree?? Well, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, did that for you. If you have accepted this amazing gift, then God has granted you salvation.

Readers, God saved you.

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  • God does not condemn you.

They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.

Psalm 34:5

11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
12 As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.

Psalm 103:11-12

Sometimes, what makes us insecure, is the shame of past sins. The guilt of failure. The fear of never being good enough. But the truth is, you don’t have to be ashamed. Your wrongdoings of the past, are gone. Wiped away. You are free!

36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

John 8:36

Furthermore, there’s now no more condemnation. No one can point a finger at you and say, “Well, they did this that one time . . .” No.

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

Romans 8:1

God is not a stern taskmaker, or a cruel father, or a condemning judge – waiting for you to mess up so He can strike you. No! He loves His creations! He desire that they be saved and cleansed and filled with joy and hope in Him!

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12 “What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? 13 And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. 14 Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.

Matthew 18:12-14

34 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!

Luke 13:34

17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

Zephaniah 3:17

20 “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; 24 for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’

Luke 15: 20-24

Do you still carry the sins of your past like a secret burden? Does it tie you up in knots of shame and insecurity? Do you feel like a failure? Do you think God is angry in heaven, shaking his finger at you because you just can’t get it right? Read the above verses, my dear! Those who look to God, their faces are radiant! They are not ashamed! If you have simply accepted the gift, you are forgiven, you are free, you are new – there is NO condemnation for you. God is not waiting to shame you, He is waiting to gather you up in His arms and help you!

And those past sins, they are no more.

Readers, God does not condemn you.

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  • God sees you.

13 So she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,” for she said, “Truly here I have seen him who looks after me.”

Genesis 16:13

Oftentimes, we acknowledge that God created us. We accept His gift of eternal life. But we don’t actually feel like He values us. Wants us. We feel ashamed or arrogant to claim God’s love and care. I mean, me? I’m just a little nobody in the grand scheme of things. God allowed me to be born, but now leaves me to muddle through life on my own. Nothing could be further from the truth! Here the Truth, dear readers:

11 He will feed His flock like a shepherd;
He will gather the lambs with His arm,
And carry them in His bosom,
And gently lead those who are with young.

Isaiah 40:11

O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off.
You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.
You have hedged me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.

Psalm 139:1-5

27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.

John 10:27-28

The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;

Deuteronomy 33:27

16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

Romans 8:16

We are His children. He is our shepherd! He lovingly carries us close to His heart. He knows us. Our needs. Our pain. Our desires. Our thoughts. Our dreams. Our gifts. Our future.

And not only does God know us. He cares about us. Every detail. Even little things that we think God wouldn’t notice or be bothered with. You are never alone. Jesus saw the needs and hurts of those around him; He saw their hearts and He cared.

13 When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, “Do not weep.”

Luke 7:13

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.

John 14:1

casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

1 Peter 5:7

12 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

1 Timothy 4:12

When we stray, He woos us back. When we call out to Him – even in our dirtiest, blackest form – He saves us. He cares about our needs, He cares about us. And He will not allow anything to take us from Him.

42 Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”

43 And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”

Luke 23:42-43

14 “Therefore, behold, I will allure her,
Will bring her into the wilderness,
And speak comfort to her.
15 I will give her her vineyards from there,
And the Valley of Achor as a door of hope;
She shall sing there,
As in the days of her youth,
As in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt.

Hosea 2:14-15

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written:

“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:35-39

18 And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen!

2 Timothy 4:18

You are of much value to God. In your distress, your fear, your sorrow, your insecurity, your anxiety, your hopelessness, your pain, He is there.

Readers, God sees you.

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  • God has a plan for you.

But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name;
You are Mine.

Isaiah 43:1

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

Jeremiah 1:5

15 Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16 do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.

Ephesians 1:15-21

10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Ephesians 2:10

For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Colossians 2:1-3

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 12:1-2

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

1 Peter 2:9

Look to Jesus! Know there is hope, and purpose, and destiny for you! God chose you! He has a future for you! He has a specific plan for your life; you have a purpose on this earth. You are needed. Your gifts and talents are meant to be used. God has called you to abundant life, hope and joy, and eternity!

Readers, God has a plan for you.

***

So . . . after all that . . . (which was really quite beautiful, don’t you agree? The Bible never fails to surprise me, amaze me, and touch deep into my soul) what is the conclusion? How does that solve the issues of our painful insecurity?

Well.

If God made you. Saved you. Does not condemn you. Sees you. Has a plan for you . . .

That means you are worthy. Valued. Forgiven. Cherished. New. You are royalty. You have great hope. You have an incredible inheritance.

Why?

Because of Jesus Christ. Because of this amazing Father God who looked down and said, “I want to save these people, because I love them“. We are enough because Jesus loves us!

If I throw off the world’s sneers and Satan’s condemnation, and look up into the glorious face of Jesus, I see that I am beautiful (He created me in His image), I am valued (He chose to save my weak, doubting soul), I am forgiven and clean (He does not condemn me), I am cherished (He sees me), I am royalty, I have hope (He has plan for me – on earth and in eternity).

True Beauty...(found on Pinterest)

If I look to the world or to myself, I will never be secure. I will never be confident. I will never be good enough. I will never be clean. I will never be hopeful.

Because it’s all about Jesus! It’s all about my loving Father! It’s not about me. And that is perfect. Because when I stop looking at myself, and start looking at Him, all I see is His love.

And I’m convinced, somehow, deep down, that I am beautiful, secure, loved, strong, HIS.

And I see that others are too. And suddenly, I want to tell the world to stop looking for self-confidence and start looking for Jesus! Because I have found this incredible security, and I want you, my dear reader, to find it too! *big hugs* ❤

Now all I have to say to you is …

19 Now set your heart and your soul to seek the Lord your God.

1 Chronicles 22:19

13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13

** Originally published on Between the Pages of This Bookish Life, June 16th, 2015 **

Consolation for the Downtrodden Heart

Dear lovely readers,

I’ve come across some verses in the book of Psalm that I want to share with you. I have long struggled with anxiety, fear, and feeling utterly alone. These are some of the verses that speak truth to me in my situation – and lift up my soul.

(Click on the chapter numbers to read the full chapters.)

Psalm 42:5-6

Why are you cast down, O my soul?
And why are you disquieted within me?
Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him
For the help of His countenance.

Psalm 40:1-3

I waited patiently for the Lord;
And He inclined to me,
And heard my cry.
He also brought me up out of a horrible pit,
Out of the miry clay,
And set my feet upon a rock,
And established my steps.
He has put a new song in my mouth—
Praise to our God;
Many will see it and fear,
And will trust in the Lord.

Psalm 40:5

Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works
Which You have done;
And Your thoughts toward us
Cannot be recounted to You in order;
If I would declare and speak of them,
They are more than can be numbered.

Psalm 37:7

Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.

Psalm 34:4-5

I sought the Lord, and He heard me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.

Psalm 34:18

The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.

Psalm 27:1

The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?

Psalm 20:1-2

May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble;
May the name of the God of Jacob defend you;
May He send you help from the sanctuary,
And strengthen you out of Zion;

Psalm 16:11

You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 5:11-12

11 But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name
Be joyful in You.
12 For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous;
With favor You will surround him as with a shield.

Psalm 5:1-3

Give ear to my words, O Lord,
Consider my meditation.
Give heed to the voice of my cry,
My King and my God,
For to You I will pray.
My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will look up.

Psalm 3:3-4

But You, O Lord, are a shield for me,
My glory and the One who lifts up my head.
I cried to the Lord with my voice,
And He heard me from His holy hill.

Psalm 46:1-3

God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling.

So put your hope in God, my friends. Praise Him. Wait for Him. Declare His words. Rest in Him. Seek Him. Look to Him and be radiant! Do not fear; do not fret. Be strengthened by Him. Rejoice in Him! Pray to Him; look up. He will hear you. He is your shield.