You are Amazing!
A few days ago I changed my desktop picture. I chose one of a cute small waddler I met in the picturesque seaside town of Lorne last Christmas. Its brown eyes were set within zebra stripes. Its plump body was covered in soft amber colours hiding a turquoise patch. Its chocolate brown feathers were perfectly outlined in white, as if an artist had decorated them with care, using a fine paint-brush. I gazed at the picture, marvelling at my Creator’s handiwork. I loved the vivid details I glimpsed in an ordinary little duck.
God must have had an abundance of fun creating His world, don’t you think? With its majestic waterfalls and soft sandy beaches; its multi legged octopuses and pyjama-striped zebras, its rugged mountains peaks and soft cotton clouds. Wouldn't you like to create something out of nothing? I would. When I studied Zoology years ago, I was mesmerised by the way our bodies have been put together. A random collection of organs? Impossible! Our bodies are intricate works of art, fashioned exquisitely by a Master Designer. And isn’t the human brain phenomenal? Despite man’s best efforts, no computer created to date can match it.
A few weeks ago, I spent an uplifting weekend away at camp with a group of beautiful women from my church. A wise, articulate Christian speaker ministered to us. On our last day together, she reminded us that God asked us to love others as much as we love ourselves. She pointed out that in order to love others, we first need to love ourselves.
Let me warn you that my next paragraph is rated PG. Yes, parental guidance is recommended. Just kidding! The speaker placed a challenge before us. She asked us to stand naked in front of a mirror and to say to ourselves three little words: ‘I love you’. Naturally, we all laughed at that. She added that it would be a confronting exercise, but a powerful way to affirm ourselves. One morning the following week, I decided to take her up on that challenge. I’m delighted to say that I passed the test with flying colours.
When I reflected on the experiment later, it struck me why I could say ‘I love you’ to myself without flinching. I was gazing at a funny flabby aging lady in that mirror. Not what I’d call a pretty sight! And yet – I was only too glad to smile at myself in acceptance. How come? It’s simple. I believe I do have God’s acceptance. If He created me – I must be very special mustn’t I? If He could lavish His love on me – surely, that says a lot? If He loved me enough to die for me, well then – there’s nothing I can do but respond to Him. With gratitude. With awe. With amazement. I can even love myself. I believe that all God created is good and as scripture instructs us, should be accepted with thanksgiving.
Of course it doesn’t mean I should ignore aspects of me that need correction. Yes, I do love myself. But I still have a lot of work to do to improve this frail creature. I should lose at least 5 kilos (sigh)! My health needs sorting out. With God’s help, I wish to refine my inner nature into the likeness of Jesus. I must press on to be all that God has created me to be. But even as I do that, it’s important that I accept myself, just the way I am.
Has anyone told you that you are amazing? Yes, I mean you. You – who are reading this blog. You are unique. Special. Loved by Him. No one else in eternity has your fingerprints. Or your laugh, your manner of speaking, your passions, your giftings, your personality, your memories. Did you know that you have been crafted in the image of God? You have. And though there are billions of people alive on this planet, there is only one you!
So have a good look at yourself today. Not with your eyes but with God’s tender gaze. He sees you not only as you are today but also as the person you could become. And don’t forget - you are one of a kind. God never makes mistakes. Be glad he formed you just the way you are. Only you can fulfill what He's called you to do. So step ahead boldly. Ask His Holy Spirit to continue His makeover on you, as you yield to Him in acceptance, trust and thanksgiving. “God saw all that he had made. It was very good.” Genesis 1:31
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14, 17