Earlier this year, I read a phenomenal little book called "Union and Communion" by Hudson Taylor. The LORD really used it to speak to me about how He sees me. We journeyed through Song of Solomon and the story laid out in chapter 1 has become very dear to me. Just like that bride, I so often say that I don't look like I'd like to look for my Lord. I'm dark, world-scorched, and yet... He thinks I'm lovely!
That's where my conversation with the LORD began this morning. Oh, how I wish that I obeyed Him better, proclaimed Him louder, looked more like Him... BUT, rather than get lost in those thoughts, I remind myself that He loves me and He thinks I'm lovely. Then, rather than turn away from Him and hide my face, I can look at Him unashamed and listen as He speaks to me through His Word.
I was a little surprised when I felt prompted to go to these verses from Song of Solomon. After all, I'm studying in Ephesians. But, I'm so glad that I did! Did you know that, according to Philippians 3:1, it is not irksome that the Lord tell us and teach us things over and over? I love that! Because, I had missed something when I had been in this passage before... Verse 5 of Chapter 1 records the bride saying, "I am very dark, but lovely..."
She believed what He said about her! I have always stopped one step short of this! I have no problem with the "I'm dark" part. There are a million things about myself that I wish were different for Jesus' sake! I'm learning to believe that He thinks I'm lovely. But, did you catch what she says? "I am very dark BUT lovely" (emphasis mine). She took what He said about her and believed it about herself!
As I wrote once before (http://spaciousplace-karrie.blogspot.com/2009/08/rose-colored-glasses.html), I thought the Lord wore rose-colored glasses where I was concerned. Not true. When God speaks something, it IS. He spoke the world into being (Genesis 1). His Words do not return to Him void (Isaiah 55:11). My response needs to be like that of Mary when the Lord sent Gabriel to tell her that she had been chosen to be the mother of Jesus, "let it be to me according to Your word" (Luke 1:38).
I am so-loved, even in my world-scorched condition, that God sent His Son to die for my sins (John 3:16, Romans 5:8). He says that, because of Jesus, I am holy and blameless in His sight (Ephesians 1:4). Because of Jesus, I am lovely!
Come on friends, you've seen it before. A woman who has lived her life thinking that no one found her attractive acts the part. Her head stays low. She has low self-esteem. BUT, when all of the sudden, she comes to believe that someone thinks she is beautiful, things start to change! Her eyes lift. Her countenance changes, and she truly becomes more lovely!
Lord, please help me to truly believe that I am lovely. Help me to let that truth resonate throughout my soul this day because I know that as it does, I will become more and more who I want to be for You - who You designed me to be in You. Thank You for wooing me once again with Your Word! You are always faithful and true! I love You, Lord!
One last thing... He thinks YOU are lovely too!