"I'm Good Enough, I'm Smart Enough, And Doggone It, People Like Me"

"I'm Good Enough, I'm Smart Enough, And Doggone It, People Like Me"

Why girls should stop listening to the world and start listening to their Father.
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All right, let’s be real. We’ve all had at least 10 moments this week where we’ve looked in the mirror and thought, “Wow, why can’t I look like [insert your favorite human being ever’s name here.]”

[For visual aid, i included what mental picture goes through my head in the scenario described above.]

But in all seriousness. We all do it! Whether it’s because we’re in college and haven’t stayed fit or the boy we’re crushing on prefers a girl who looks more like Blake Lively (I mean hey, I don’t blame him), we all get down on ourselves. Self worth is something that girls have been struggling with for years! I mean, why else were corsets invented?

I think the struggle to find/feel self worth is caused by the fact that we look in all the wrong places. A girl’s self esteem falls instantly when a boy doesn’t find her adequate enough or the scale shows a number she never expected to see three months ago (welcome to college). And I’m not putting anyone down here; I constantly struggle with feeling like a 10 when I think I look like a -3. But today’s society tells us that if you aren’t a size 2 with long hair and eyelashes, a toned body, and straight, white teeth, you’re at the bottom of the list.

It’s so easy to believe, though! I’ve been at college for a little over three months now, and I’m sitting here with the same-looking teeth I’ve had since I was 10 years old and without the fit body I had in high school (thanks, Coach Taylor). I’m constantly beating myself up for it, and I find myself wishing I looked differently than I do an unhealthy number of times a week.

It’s a trap. Once you start noticing your flaws, you become addicted. And while at times I feel like there is no solution, I came to my senses the other day and remembered something that I seemed to have put in the back of my head:

There’s a really cool dude who made you in a really special way for a really awesome purpose.

Yep. We’ve been told since our first day in Sunday School that God made us the way we are, in his image, for a reason. It’s been thrown at us a thousand times, and it’s easy for us to check ourselves out every time we hear it because it’s nothing new. But how many times will it take a Sunday School teacher or your mom pounding this information at you until you actually take it to heart?

He says in Song of Solomon 4:7, “You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you.” He literally made every part of us flawless in His eyes, and He made us for a purpose. God is God. Trust me, I’m pretty sure He knows what He’s doing. He created man and, after saying everything else He created was “good,” said that man was “very good.” And not only did he create man, but He sent His son to die on a cross for man. Don’t you think God most really love the human race? And if He loves us so much, why would He create us as anything but perfect in His eyes?

So yeah, some boys might not see us through the same lens that our Father does. And yeah, maybe I’m not going to the gym as much as I thought I would now that I’m in college. But does that make me, you, or anyone else any less perfect in the Creator’s eyes? Absolutely not. We are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:4), and no pound on the scale or crooked tooth is gonna change that.

Yes, I still wish I had the body of a Victoria’s Secret Angel, and yes, I sometimes wish my teeth didn’t look like the kid I babysit’s do. But I’m still perfect in His eyes, and my value isn’t any less because I don’t look like Blake Lively. So, moral of the story: you’re good enough. Maybe you’re not “perfect” in the world’s eyes, but you’re beyond perfect in the eyes of the one who made you and loves you more than anything… and that’s all that matters.

Cover Image Credit: theskinnyconfidential.com

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I'm A Woman And You Can't Convince Me Breastfeeding In Public Is OK In 2019

Sorry, not sorry.

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Lately, I have seen so many people going off on social media about how people shouldn't be upset with mothers breastfeeding in public. You know what? I disagree.

There's a huge difference between being modest while breastfeeding and just being straight up careless, trashy and disrespectful to those around you. Why don't you try popping out a boob without a baby attached to it and see how long it takes for you to get arrested for public indecency? Strange how that works, right?

So many people talking about it bring up the point of how we shouldn't "sexualize" breastfeeding and seeing a woman's breasts while doing so. Actually, all of these people are missing the point. It's not sexual, it's just purely immodest and disrespectful.

If you see a girl in a shirt cut too low, you call her a slut. If you see a celebrity post a nude photo, you call them immodest and a terrible role model. What makes you think that pulling out a breast in the middle of public is different, regardless of what you're doing with it?

If I'm eating in a restaurant, I would be disgusted if the person at the table next to me had their bare feet out while they were eating. It's just not appropriate. Neither is pulling out your breast for the entire general public to see.

Nobody asked you to put a blanket over your kid's head to feed them. Nobody asked you to go feed them in a dirty bathroom. But you don't need to basically be topless to feed your kid. Growing up, I watched my mom feed my younger siblings in public. She never shied away from it, but the way she did it was always tasteful and never drew attention. She would cover herself up while doing it. She would make sure that nothing inappropriate could be seen. She was lowkey about it.

Mindblowing, right? Wait, you can actually breastfeed in public and not have to show everyone what you're doing? What a revolutionary idea!

There is nothing wrong with feeding your baby. It's something you need to do, it's a part of life. But there is definitely something wrong with thinking it's fine to expose yourself to the entire world while doing it. Nobody wants to see it. Nobody cares if you're feeding your kid. Nobody cares if you're trying to make some sort of weird "feminist" statement by showing them your boobs.

Cover up. Be modest. Be mindful. Be respectful. Don't want to see my boobs? Good, I don't want to see yours either. Hard to believe, I know.

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My Respect For The Searching Pagan

A tribute to belief.

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One of my professors enjoys saying, with emphasis and a smirk: "People make their gods."

"You make your gods up in your heads. You fashion them yourselves."

Would it help anything for me to disagree? I could never fashion God. He fashions me.

It's an African-American literature class, so the poetry and prose often touch on African heritage and tribal gods and so forth.

And so tribal masks and stick idols are talked about with reverence and a scholarly tone but with an air of above-ness. I don't quite know how to describe it. It's like someone talking above a guinea pig cage, praising the guinea pig habits and culture and their "guinea pig-ness," but obviously speaking as their superior. They are a study subject, a specimen, not an equal. She belittles their belief, in everything she doesn't say and in her frequent line.

And I find myself taking the side — the side of the tribes!

Her arrogant unbelief, her belief in herself, is staggering, and she pats herself on the back by, in no uncertain words, equating the son of God, Jesus Christ, with some crude sculptures.

(I am sorry if this turns into too much of a rant. I am called to love this professor and pray for her good, not to be sinfully angry with her!)

I respect the pagans for their belief, their wild longing. They knew that there is something more than the materials they saw, or they longed deeply for the "something else." They worshipped something outside of or beyond themselves.

Atheists, they worship at the altar of self.

I pity the pagans, for they worshipped what they did not know and yet what they created with their own hands. They bowed to dirt and dust, to nothing. But I hold a respect for them, for their wild longing and leap, for their acknowledgment that we are made to worship, for their dancing expression of longing and hope, for their search.

They are a million miles closer to the truth, to beauty, in their native ignorance of Christ, than this professor who looks upon the crucifixion with amusement.

If only she could let the possibility of truth pierce her hide, if only she could walk down from her intellectual pedestal, to worship at the baby's manger, at the humble, horrifying cross. I want more than anything, that her eyes may see and eyes may hear.

If only she could look on Jesus, not as a specimen, but as her Savior.

I pray for the day! In the meantime, she teaches me ever more about the startling beauty of humility and about the incredible limits of the intellect. Rationalization and education are a load of crap if they lead us up into the dungeons of pride.

The soul of the unbeliever, of the atheist, is more chained and poisoned and broken than that of any human slave who ever lived in the freedom of Christ.

We come upon a lot of hard questions in literature, some hard morsels that will knot your stomach. Like there's this slicing fact that the salvation of many people into God's kingdom (and out of paganism) came by the way of kidnapping and brutal slavery.

Many of the African-American poems talk about the cost, the high cost of knowing Jesus. Many Africans paid the great cost of slavery in finding Jesus. Was it worth it?

Not if you think Christianity is merely soul comfort. Not if you think it just provides structure and purpose. Not if you think it's just a constraining religion or just one of many ways to God.

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. And to those who believe, yes, He is worth everything, though His ways are beyond our understanding.

Christ is not a God for white people alone! What a joke. He came 'first for the Jew, and then for the Gentile.'

Jesus reaches out to every nation, to every pagan, every atheist. He reaches out a loving hand to all men, none excluded, asking them to feast around the fire, to know Him and forsake their sin.

A relationship with Jesus makes joy central, and suffering, no matter how great, peripheral, in this life. For we know the end of our stories (and their real beginnings) will be glorious and good: redeemed. This harsh world of our sight is not all there is.

Christ is the hope of all nations, a healing balm for the bitter cynic, and the fulfillment of longing for the pagan.

Through the tribal fire, through the haze of death and the burning horror, through the pains of great wickedness, our perfect God reaches out a hand to those who run from Him. He offers love, He offers His one and only Son, bearing our sin on a cross. No one could have made this up, this radical, forgiving love.

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." — John 3:16

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