Be YOU!

Be YOU!

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is You-er than You.

—Dr. Seuss

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."

Oscar Wilde

I love walking through a field of wildflowers. Every season there is something new to surprise and delight me.

As summer shifts quietly to autumn, the wildflowers change too. Gone are the purple columbine, the yellow primrose, and the red poppies. They’ve been replaced by purple asters, and yellow goldenrod with a few straggling red cardinal flowers thrown in for good measure.  

God has painted our world with a vast variety of flowers in every hue. Anne LaMott in her book Grace Eventually speaks of God’s creativity this way, “The meadow was a crazy jumble of flowers, giddy experiments of a Painter trying ideas out together: How about this with this? Isn’t it wiggy?”

If God saw fit to bless this world with such unique beauty and variety, it is only fitting that he created you and I uniquely beautiful in all our diversity. 

In fact, David wrote Psalm 139 in awe of how intimately God made and loves us…

13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit them together in my mother’s womb. 14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! It is amazing to think about. Your workmanship is marvelous—and how well I know it. 15 You were there while I was being formed in utter seclusion! 16 You saw me before I was born and scheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your book! 17-18 How precious it is, Lord, to realize that you are thinking about me constantly! I can’t even count how many times a day your thoughts turn toward me. And when I waken in the morning, you are still thinking of me!

The thing is, I didn’t always believe that. Most of my life I struggled like crazy to conform to other people’s expectations: to be thin, not chunky (as I was often called in childhood), to be stoic, and not so emotional. To be strong, and not weak. To be ambitious, not a daydreamer.

It wasn’t until I took a StrengthsFinder test some ten years back that I came face-to-face with myself and the truth about how God had hard-wired me. He had made me just the way he wanted me to be. I didn’t need to be the things I thought I ought to be. I could just be me. The romantic daydreamer whose heart resonates with poetic words on a page and a field full of flowers. The weakling who God makes strong through his love. And the not so teenage-thin figure of my nearly 60-year-old self.

Thin. Fat. Tall. Short. Crooked. Straight. Stoic. Sensitive. Strong. Weak. Ambitious. Daydreamer. Beauty. Homely. Black. Brown. White.

No matter what descriptors are yours. No matter what areas in your life you feel less than. Girls, when self-doubt whispers your name… please remember that you are precious in the sight of God. You were created by him. You are loved by him. And you are hard-wired just the way God wanted you to be when he knit you together in your mother’s womb.

“There is nothing more beautiful than seeing a person being themselves.”

—Mandy Hale 

Now go in confidence and use those beautiful gifts you’ve been given by God, for God’s glory today.

“When you are living the best version of yourself, you inspire others to live

the best versions of themselves.”

Steve Maraboli

Identity Thief
When Angels Appear
 

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Julie has been inspiring children, youth, and women as a speaker, teacher, silent retreat leader, author and mentor for over 30 years. She was the Director of Women's Bible Studies at Eagle Brook Church, is a certified Spiritual Director and the owner of Heart Matters Publishing Company. She is an alumnus of Bethel University and Christos Center for Spiritual Formation. As an author she has written Bible Study Curriculum and Devotionals, including her latest collaboration, Whispers of God's Grace. Julie draws on her wide range of life experiences, humor and love of God's Word and His creation for her writing. When she is not writing, you will find her absorbed in a good book, puttering in her garden or dreaming of France. Julie and her husband, Rey, live in White Bear Lake, MN and are the parents of two grown sons, Erik and Kyle.

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