We are born breakable, with a label on us that says ” fragile handle with care”! I am sorry to say that not every parent, care giver or person in our lives heeds this warning and they treat the fragile recklessly, not valuing the treasure that they have. You are a treasure and should be handled with care. No matter how broken you are, you are not beyond repair. God will gather all the broken pieces of your life and fashion them into a new more beautiful vessel than it was before. Give God your broken pieces today and let Him make something beautiful out of you!
This is a continuation of a previous blog called Broken, My testimony if you haven’t read it click the link, I reccomend you read that post first so that this one will make sense. I’m writing it in pieces because it is quite lengthy, There will be another post in continuation to this one so stay tuned.
…After that night in my parents bedroom I wasn’t the same. When everyone else didn’t fight for me, I stopped fighting for me. The negative feelings I had about myself interfered with my ability to make good choices. I turned to food, mainly sugar for comfort and by the time I started high school I weighed just over 200 pounds. Weight was a problem for me because food was my addiction, it is a vicious cycle that keeps you in a perpetual down ward spiral. I could share a whole blog post on my struggle with weight, However this post isn’t about my weight although it plays a roll, so I will save it for another day. The summer before grade 10 I lost 30 pounds and I maintained that weight loss give or take a few pounds until I got married. I was never at a comfortable weight and was self conscious all time about it. As I’ve said in a previous blog I was in one bad relationship after another. Sex was completely off the table for me and in high school that’s what all the boys wanted it seemed. I got rejected for that reason more times than I can remember. When I was 15 I met a guy and thought He was the one for me. He was two years older than me finishing grade 12 and he was already enrolled in a nearby college for the next year. He had his life figured out and that was a big plus. He was also of the same mind set that we would not have sex before marriage and that was mind easing for me . Six months after we started dating he began to hit me, it started off slowly but gained momentum as time went on. The mind games and mental abuse were awful. I wasn’t allowed to meet his friends, he said I was too fat and I had to lose some weight first. I didn’t lose any weight, but eventually almost 2 years after we started dating I met his family and a couple friends. He had managed to convince me that everything was my fault and I deserved what was happening to me. I think about it now and I don’t know how I managed to survive mentally through this time, it was truly only by Gods grace. Another blow to my self worth came one day when I was fed up with him hitting me. A lot of the time if he didn’t like what I said he would slap me across the face. This particular day we had ordered pizza with another couple at my house, my parents were not home. I asked about the price of the pizza because I could tell that he was upset about it, he told me it was none of my busines and not to ask him again. When the pizza came I answered the door he was standing beside me ready to pay, when I asked the pizza guy how much it was, my boyfriend didn’t like that at all, he paid the pizza guy quickly and right in front of the other couple he slapped me across the face. Feeling brave and knowing I wasn’t alone, I hit him back, he threw the pizza across the floor and proceeded to beat me up, the other couple that was with us turned their back on me and went into the other room until it was over. Again I got the message that I wasn’t worth fighting for. What is even more terrible is that we ate the pizza together as if nothing ever happened. I didn’t have the courage to leave him, but I knew I couldn’t stay. One night he dropped a bomb on me, something he knew could cause us to break up,but he was optimistic that we could work through it and stay together. After that confession I was able to muster up the courage to tell him we needed to take a break and he agreed. For the next four months I didn’t hear from or see him. I didn’t realize it then, that even though I felt alone I wasn’t alone and even though I felt hurt and abandoned, God hadn’t abandoned me. God saw me in my pain and sent me a rescuer, someone who would stand by me, someone who would eventually help me walk away from that toxic relationship for good. He was truly a God send, because I did contemplate going back to my abuser to spite everything he had done to me. Once out of that relationship I began to seriously date the man God sent me the one who “rescued” me. He was a complete gentleman, nothing like I had ever encountered before, he was so different from the rest of the guys I ever dated that I didn’t want to let him go. He was almost 6 years older than me and had a lot more life experience. I soon began to worry that he would he would leave me. I told him in the beginning that sex was off the table and he completely respected that, he said he would never make me do anything I didn’t want to do. This however did not bring relief to me, in fact it pushed me toward securing him by using sex. One day I flat out asked him to sleep with me, he was a gentleman and he tried talking me out of it, because he knew what had happened to me and what I had told him from the start. I convinced him that I was ok with it all. It took a while but eventually we did sleep together. After our first time I was instantly freaked out, I told him I changed my mind that I didn’t want to do that again, I was sorry and he too was sorry and we agreed to not make that part of our relationship. Sadly once we opened that door, it was quite difficult not to sleep with each other, with every time we did it, it got easier and easier to do. Eventually we got engaged and 2 years later we were married. I finally felt that my life was on the upswing and my past was completely behind me, but I was wrong. I struggled in my marriage, I struggled at work and I struggled to be the person I wanted to be. I tried to be perfect, I thought that if I did everything perfectly I would have no problems, and everyone would like me, but trying to be perfect just put me face to face continually with my failures. I had a constant underlying forboading feeling. I Attributed that feeling to the mess that my marriage was in and the negative circumstances happening in my life. I tried repeatedly to “fix” the problems, but to no avail. At the age of 25 after having my second child I became restless. We had just moved away from everything we had known for the last several years, to a new town where we knew no one. We found a church to go to shortly after we moved here, but we didn’t end up attending it. One day it all just got to me and while the kids were napping I went to my room to pray. I sat on the edge of the bed and I remember thinking that I couldn’t ride any longer on my parents coat tails and I couldn’t run to mommy and daddy every time I had a challenge. I was now a mommy and I was responsible for them. I was thinking quietly to myself when I asked myself this question, “do I believe in God because my parents do and because that’s the way I was raised or do I believe in God for myself”? As I sat there and pondered it over there was no denying that God was real, He was real to me and I believed in Him because I believed in Him. In that moment I rededicated my life to Christ and I made the decision that I was going back to church and bringing my kids with me even if my husband wasnt going to come. It might seem cliche but the truth is that day my life began to change. To be continued.
This is day 10, I made it all the way through to spite a rocky start. I am so much better today for having done the challenge than I would have been. Funny enough, this morning as I was getting ready for the day I fully intended to wear make up, but one of my eyes just wouldn’t stop tearing, it was tearing so bad that I was unable to put on my eye make up. I waited for about a half hour to see if it would stop tearing, but that was as long as I could wait because I was meeting a friend at a specific time. I realized I wasn’t going to be able to put on make up today, and I smiled because it didn’t bother me in the least, as the saying goes “I’ve come along way baby”! I also wanted to mention to those of you who may have just stumble across this post and to those of you who do not know, I am giving away the book Captivating by John and Stasi Elderedge, I mention this book in my journal entry for day 10. I’m not sure how to do a direct link or any link for that matter, but if you visit my site its on there the title is ” book give away” please check it out if you are interested. So now without further ado, here’s day 10!
March 6, 2014
Day 10 of the “no make up challenge” the final day of this challenge. I approach it with a new perspective, a good experience and a challenging one. I feel far different form what I felt in the very beginning. In the beginning of this process when The Lord was putting it on my heart to go without make up, I was taken a back and had a hard time seeing myself doing do it, especially going to church or to any family function.The thought of doing the challenge over whelmed me so I just stopped thinking about it and for the next couple of weeks it didn’t come up again, until I read chapter 8 of the book called “Captivating” by John and Stasi Eldridge. The chapters title was called “Beauty to unveil.” I read, that the essence of a woman is beauty. When I was a little girl I learned to not wear my heart on my sleeve, through different things that happened to me and circumstances I did not want to let people see me as vulnerable in any way.I was a tough cookie and I would even fight if I had to, but no one was going to see me cry. I was determined to maintain an outward image that I was in control of. It was my defence mechanism to keep people out. As I read further in to the chapter it begins to talk about letting your defences down, that behind the exterior of nice clothes , beautiful hair and a face adorned with make up is where true beauty is found. A woman who gives her heart rather than retreat in survival mode. Peter writes in 1 Peter 3:3-4 your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewlery and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. As John and Stasi say in the book, ” Peter is not saying we shouldn’t enjoy wearing pretty things. What he is trying to say is that true beauty comes from the inner part of us. Our hearts.” This is what struck me, I knew at that moment that I had a choice, I could choose to believe that I don’t hide myself behind make up so why should I go without wearing it, this isn’t God speaking to me. Or I could acknowledge the truth and be obedient to what I believed God was putting on my heart. The rest is history. Through it all, ever moment that I felt ugly, uncomfortable, or even inferior was worth it. It showed me my heart, it made me put down my defences, it made me face the truth in John 8:38 it says and you will know the truth and the truth shall make you free. My goal is to be free and it is to be beautiful not from the outside in but from the inside out. So am I cured!? Yes I have completed the most important task of this challenge, facing the truth, the process however is still ongoing, there is more for me to learn, more that I want to know and I am very thankful for the work that God is doing in my life. We are all a work in progress, thank God according to Philippians 1:6 that “He who began a good work in you, is FAITHFUL to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Well here we are, we’re getting close to the end of this series. This post is for days 8&9. I have enjoyed reading through every journal entry before I post it, it helps me to see how far I have come as well as shows me what work still needs to be done. I have enjoyed sharing this with you and I pray that you were able to get something out of my beautiful mess. Stay tuned for day 10, plus there is some bonus journal entries. See in the next blog
Day 8 and 9 of the no make up challenge, just one more day left! Day 8 was a day spent mostly at home, I dropped off and picked Tyler up from school and drove Nathaniel to work. I am more used to seeing myself without make up, it doesn’t bother me like it did. It’s faster getting ready and out the door in the mornings, that’s a plus about not wearing make up. Day 9 which was today, I was all over the place, our women’s prayer group this morning, the hospital this afternoon with Christian, he got his cast changed today, then I went to visit my little sister and after that we went to the mall, it did cross my mind that I could run into someone that I know/knew from my past and the funny thing is that thought lasted for a moment and I just had to say, I don’t care, if I run into someone I run into them, I can’t fuss about that. The one thing that plays over in my mind is this, there is nothing about me that stands out or that is different, nothing that would draw people to me and that is something I am going to pray about, because whether I wear make up or not I’m still Lisa, I’m still a wife, a mom,a sister, a daughter, a friend, a cousin… It doesn’t change who I am, so cliche but it’s true, it may affect how out going I am but everything I am, I am with or without make up! What’s in my heart is in my heart and my outside appearance doesn’t affect that. Discovering that beauty comes from the inside out is an interesting one, because if you asked me where beauty comes form, I would have said from the inside out, but I didn’t believe that at all, it’s clear to me now that I have gone through this challenge. I have put a lot of time and effort into my outside appearance, don’t get me started on the weight and body image thing!!! Ugh too much time and lots of heart ache! If I believed that beauty comes from with in I would spend more time developing my inside and a lot less time on my outside and trying to make it perfect. Do I get it now!? No not by a mile, but you know I see it now and that makes a big difference. I want to do what will benefit me and others the most. I want a beautiful inside and I also want a beautiful outside. My question to myself, am I beautiful?
He is everything to me, He is all that I need and all that I want, there is nothing in this life that can compare to the great love and goodness of my Father God! He saved me, He rescued me and He redeemed my life from destruction. His praise will continually be in my mouth! This poor man (woman) cried and the Lord heard him (her) and saved him (her) out of all his (her) troubles! Psalm 34:6 (KJV)
Here is a poem God put on my heart to write. It is called “Insecurity’s fight”
The battles that I face are nothing new under the sun, they are not unique but are common to everyone. When I was young insecurity knocked on my door and before I knew it, it had me on the floor. Wrapping its life sucking tentacles around me, it held me down so I could not flee. Insecurity would speak to me day in and day out, bombarding my mind with thoughts of self doubt. So convincing it was I didn’t see its deceit when it continually spoke to me of rejection and defeat. It said to me, “No matter the cost or what may come, in order to have friends under them you must succumb”. It shouted at me when I wanted to cry “suck it up” it would say and “don’t ever let them see you cry”! It advised me to bury my emotions and become numb to the ever growing loneliness that in time to me had come. It raged against me like a mighty storm, so battered and bruised I didn’t recognize my own form. Tormenting me with the day ahead, what would it bring and what would be said. “Avoid”, “avoid”, it would say “don’t argue comply, that’s the only way”! “Let them say what they want, and do what they desire, after all, why would you want to start that kind of fire”. It came to taunt me when I looked in the mirror, “what do you see”? “I see no beauty here”. “If beauty eludes, then why do you eat, those extra pounds just bring on your defeat”! “Maybe if you were skinny there might be some hope, but chances are high that you’ll try to lose but we both know you won’t”. With a good dose of guilt and a heaping portion of pain, it had reduced me to nothing and brought about a lot of my shame. So confident it was that its grip on me was tight, it jeered, it dared and it challenged me to fight! ” You are stupid and worthless, there’s nothing special about you, you are weak and you know it, that much is true. How can you win when you’re not strong enough to fight, I dare you, I challenge you to try with all your might”! It may have been right, but I will tell you where it was wrong, it did not factor in, that I didn’t have to be strong! In one moment of time, that’s all it took, for God stepped in and everything shook! I reached out for God and He reached out for me, my daughter He said you are now free! And although it is over there is still work to be done, each and every tentacle must be removed until there are none. In doing this I will not be alone, For my God is ever with me and He calls me His own.
Today’s post is for days 6 & 7 of the no makeup challenge, this is what happens when God messes with your comfort zone…
March 2, 2014
Day 6 and 7 of the “no make up” challenge. 2 significant things going on both days. Yesterday (day 6) we had my family here for my nieces 3rd birthday party, I will tell you for a moment I was mildly mad that i couldn’t wear make up, I do realize I have a choice but I also know I will stick by the choice I made and that is not to wear make up for 10 days. I do miss wearing it but, I am happy that I’m doing this even though I confessed to being mildly mad about it yesterday. The good about it completely out weighs the bad and I’ll take the good any day. For the moment I was mad it was simply because I felt the challenge, my family knows me yet I was more disturbed about them seeing me without make up than going out in public without it. I feel like I have a “standard” to up hold, I felt more vulnerable, uncomfortable and self conscious. I have gone years building up this image of myself of the perfectly put together woman! Ugh, there I said it, I want the appearance of perfection so that people accept me and don’t really see who I really am, imperfect, and I don’t want to know, that people think less of me, I don’t want to let anyone down, especially with my life, I don’t want to be a disappointment. I feel like if I don’t keep up this facade then, I’m worthless, and unlikable. I will be lonely. I’m not too sure right now where that comes from. I feel like such a failure, but if I look the part then people won’t notice what I feel I really am. Putting make up on is something I could always control and choosing to do this challenge has left me feeling out of control. I have to admit that I try not to think about the fact that I am make up-less, it hurts less. My little sister commented that I wasn’t wearing make up, not in a bad way, she said she can see that I look like my (our) dad, she also said she didn’t think I looked bad without make up on. My dad said to me on the heels of that , that a lady in their church approached him and told him she thought that I was so beautiful, it made me uncomfortable and it didn’t make me feel good, a red flag is up, I want to know why I felt the way I did!? Today (day 7) was church day, the place I felt I would be the most uncomfortable without make up,but, I was ok today, I wasn’t thrilled, but I also wasn’t freaked out. I took it all in stride. I’m getting used to seeing myself without make up on, it is getting easier. I want to work through my feelings and weigh them out with the light and truth of God’s word, John 8:38 says …and you will know the truth and the truth shall make you free… That’s for me, I am set free!
Hi all, I am giving away one book called Captivating ( unveiling the mystery of a woman’s soul) by John and Stasi Eldredge to one winner. I have needed a lot of healing where my soul was concerned.(I’m not ready right now to share my testimony so I won’t be getting in to any details today, but I will say that God has been doing a work in me and it has been wonderful). This book was one of the tools He used to bring healing to my soul, and I want to share this tool with another individual who is in need of healing in their soul. All I want from my readers is this, 1) for you to leave me a comment and 2) share one attribute you like about yourself. So that’s it, I do look forward to hearing from you. DISCLAIMER! I can only send the book to places and countries that will allow me to send it to them. The give away will end on Tuesday, February 9, 2016 I will announce the winner on that day. I’m going to end this blog in the words of the Apostle John who said ” Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers”. 3 John 1:2 (NKJV)
Reading my journal entry for today, I realized that I was journaling for day 6 and I still called it day 5, which now the rest of the journal entries are one off, but I know that’s ok because the content and the feelings are all there. So here it is with all the wrong dayness with it 🙂
March 1, 2014
Day 5 was yesterday of the no make up challenge, I didn’t journal because I didn’t leave the house yesterday, as you know I am quite comfortable at home being make up-less! Today I went out to a few different places, I haven’t been so focused while I’m out on the fact that I’m not wearing make up, it’s when I catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror, or I see a beautiful woman that I am brought back to the reality that I don’t have any make up on. I got a comment today from someone saying ” you look tired today” I took that as not that I looked tired but I looked different because I had no make up on, a lot of people are just not used to seeing me out without make up on. Although I am tired I don’t want to look tired too. I have been thinking a bit about this journey I’m on and God is bringing out motives, motives are important to God and they are important to us. The why behind what we do is very important because it comes from our heart. If the only reason I give a gift to someone is so that I get a gift back, well that is not a good motive for giving a gift, it will just lead to disappointment. I’m looking at why do I wear make up and could I live without wearing make up? 2 reasons why I wear make up #1 is for approval and # 2 is because I like the art of make up. One reason is not a good reason to wear it and one is a good reason to wear it, one will always out weigh the other, which one will it be. By taking off my make up I can get my answer, mostly I wear it for approval, I know that because in the beginning of this challenge I was concerned about what I looked like to other people and was comparing myself to them. In the last couple of days I have realized that I miss putting make up on. For instance when Ive seen a nice make up look I want to do it or I think about eyeliner and I want to try something with it, then I know I genuinely like to do make up for the art of it as well, I like to play around with it. It’s the first reason that I wear make up that has to be adjusted and I’m willing to let God help me with that one. I truly want to be free.
Today’s journal entry is for day four. I remember day 4 very well because our son Tyler broke his wrist on day 3 of this challenge and the break was so bad that they could not repair it without surgery so they sent us home only to come back to the hospital the next morning for 8:30. We spent 12 hours at the hospital on day four waiting for him to get his surgery, he ended up being the last surgery of the day that was at 6:00 pm, by the time the surgery was over and he had recovered from the anesthetic enough to go home it was well after 8:00 pm. 2014 was an eventful year for my family, Tyler wasn’t the only one to break his wrist, one month prior to Tyler’s break, my middle son Christian broke his wrist in a skateboarding competition, and five months after that he broke it again skateboarding, but the second break was severe as it was a compound fracture with both bones coming through the skin… I’ll take it easy on the queasy stomachs out there and not give you anymore of the gory details. Stress , too much of it is an awful thing, that was my 2014, it challenged me to be a doer of the Word and not just a forgetful hearer. I had to cast my care continually, but I am more the better for it today. So now here is what you have been waiting for journal entry day 4 of the no makeup challenge.
February 28, 2014
Day 4 of what I am going to call the ” no make up challenge” to be honest so far I haven’t been a big fan of going without make up, but I know there is more to this than that. We were at the hospital again today with Tyler, he had to have surgery on his wrist to repair it. When we got to the waiting room area there were 3 other couples there, guess what I did the minute I walked in to that room? Some might not guess correctly others of you may know right off the bat, either way I am going to share it with you. I looked at all three women and began to compare myself with them, I came in assessing my completion so to speak. This was eye opening as I had not really ever noticed myself be so comparative, my thoughts were as follows “well out of all 4 women in this room I am the second smallest weight wise” one woman was petite and dressed stylishly which my attention was drawn to her immediately as what I can only conclude as she was my biggest threat, ridiculous I know, but before this I really had no idea this is what I did. I believe that simply by removing the make up has made me more self conscious and my desire to get everything out of this experience that God wants for me, has heightened awareness of myself and my actions whether openly or privately. This speaks volumes to me, now to unravel it and make sense of it all, not on my own but through prayer and in the light of Gods word and with His wisdom other wise I will gain nothing because apart from God I am nothing and I can do nothing. I wasn’t as uncomfortable without make up today as I was yesterday, but I still was well aware of my naked face especially in certain instances.
Here it is, Day 3 and I just read over my journal entry, It has made me think, am I any different today than I was 2 years ago!? I’m happy to say that I can see the difference in me since then, however reading over this journal entry I still remember how it felt. I know I am a work in progress, thank God He doesn’t leave us where we’re at. So without further Delay here is day 3.
February 26, 2014
Well today was day 3 of no make up. It was a full day, our son Tyler broke his wrist and we spent most of our day at the hospital. I felt ok this morning leaving the house without make up on, I went to the ladies prayer group and was fine until I went to the washroom and was reminded that I was wearing no make up, immediately I felt ugly and a bit self conscious, my hair did not look as nice as I had hoped it would and I felt bad. When I was at the hospital I didn’t think too much about the fact that I wasn’t wearing any make up, until I went to the bathroom and caught a glimpse of my naked face. Again I felt ugly, I began to think about why I am doing this no make up “challenge” so I knew I needed to dig deeper than just being disgusted with the way I look without make up,( wow, that says a lot there, that word disgusted is how I felt) I really feel like there is nothing special about me, that I can get lost in the crowd, that I am invisible. That makes me feel insecure. Funny if you think about it though, how can make up make such a difference, how does it make me stand out or feel special? I don’t know and I’m not able to answer that just yet, but God is faithful, His word says if you seek me you will find me and he also said ask for wisdom and he will give it to you, no questions asked. I know I will come to know and understand what I need to find out of this whole “challenge” right now it’s enough to just know that I don’t think too much of myself and that’s not what God wants for me and frankly I don’t want it either, I’ve been feeling this way for far too long and I’m done! I don’t want to be a prisoner to anything, even if that anything is wearing make up.