Dear Love: Beauty for Ashes

Dear Love,

I know that you’ve been hurt a lot. I know that you’ve had people that you love cause you so much pain. I know that you’ve had those that you’ve given your best to, turn around and give you their worst. You’ve faced the heat of being talked about and lied on. You’ve inhaled the smoke of being betrayed and abandoned. You’ve been burned by harsh looks and cruel words. The very things you valued the most- your reputation, your relationships, your peace of mind, your dreams- have been set ablaze and destroyed. You may be in a place where your life seems to be in ruins and you are surrounded by nothing but ashes. 

You’re probably angry and resentful at those who have caused you to lose so much. But love, my love! Don’t you realize that the fires others set in your life with negativity and hate were meant for your good? They may have meant to destroy you, but God was using it to produce something valuable in your life. You’re holding on to all that bitterness and anger, because since you’ve lost so much, you feel that’s all you have to hold on to. But love, my love! What you fail to realize is all the ashes others produced in your life are the very currency God uses in exchange for His beauty. No matter what they destroyed or took away from you, they were giving you something priceless in the process. I know it can seem dismal to look at your life and see nothing but ashes, but know that the more ashes that have piled up, the more treasure you have stored up to sell to the Father for His beauty and glory.

My love, can’t you see why His Word tells you to bless the ones that have cursed you and pray for those who have despitefully used you? No matter what they stole from you, they paid you in the process. Their intentions may have been to destroy you. Under normal circumstances they would have, but don’t you know the God that you serve and who He is? The God that you serve, is the One who can that can take what was meant to be destructive and transform it into something productive. He is the One who can take the very things that were meant to break you down and use them to build you up. He is the One who can take all of ashes that have accumulated in your life and replace them with unrivaled beauty.

So my love, gather up all the bitterness and the anger. Take all of the tears and the sorrow. Pick up all of the broken pieces and ashes in your life and lay them before the Father. He’s ready to make a spiritual transaction with you and He’s waiting to barter with you for all the pain that you’ve been given. He wants to acquire all of the ashes that life has given you, and in exchange He will gift you with His beauty.



The Skin I’m In

This week one of my friends gave me a beauty challenge. Everyday, I have to text her about one thing that I find beautiful about myself. This is one of the things that I’ve texted her about this week and I really feel led to share it, so here it is.

“I think my skin is beautiful. I absolutely love the color of my skin. #myblackisbeautiful. Even though I have some scars and I stay struggling with acne, it’s okay because my skin is constantly rejuvenating and renewing itself. No matter what happens to my skin, it eventually heals itself and over time even the worst scars fade away. My skin reminds me that I’m the same way. No matter what happens to me, I will always heal and even the things that hurt me and leave me with scars, fade away in time.”

I’m really enjoying this beauty challenge because it’s allowing me to see and embrace myself in a new way. I’ve actually been praying the past few months for the Lord to allow me to see myself the way He sees me, and this challenge is allowing me to do just that. I’ve often shied away from really embracing the things that I find beautiful about myself because I didn’t want to be prideful or vain. However, Psalm 139:14 says that we can praise Him because we are fearfully and wonderfully made. How can I praise God for how wonderful His works are, when I won’t even acknowledge the inner and outer beauty He’s endowed me with? This week of reflections on my beauty has really allowed me to see how fearfully and wonderfully made I am. I am beautiful. I am a wonderful creation of the Father and my soul knows it very well.

If you’re reading this, know that you are breathtakingly beautiful, too. Just like my friend challenged me, I now challenge you to do the same thing. Find a friend or your mom or your daughter or whoever and do this challenge with them for a week. I hope and pray it allows you to see yourself and your beauty in new way. And if you decide to do this challenge, I would LOVE if you leave a comment and let me know how it goes.