They may not actually have mouths that speak, but we can still hear their voice. They may not say audible words, but they shout a message loud and clear. Everywhere we look, we are surrounded by advertisements, televisions, billboards, songs, and magazines that announce their message saying, “You have to look a certain way, dress a certain way, act a certain way.”
These messages are loud, but their not true. Our culture shouts lies that cloud our view of ourselves and God. Because of this, we look in the mirror with blurry, unfocused vision. My skin is too pale. My hair is too flat. My waist is too big. My face is too plain.
No matter how loudly these voices speak, God’s voice is more powerful. No matter how blurry our vision may be when we look at ourselves in the mirror, the Lord is able to restore our sight. All we need is a new pair of lenses, which are the words of truth from the Bible.
“The Lord your God is with you. He is mighty to save. He takes great delight in you. He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17 NIV1984 )
God delights in you! He rejoices over who He made you to be. When you look in the mirror, see yourself the way God sees you: beautiful, valued, treasured, and full of purpose. God is ready to give you a new vision, a vision not skewed by our culture. With this clear vision, you will be able to see how precious you really are.
Thought for the day: As you notice the messages around you that our culture shouts, remember God’s voice is true and He says that you are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Ashli Roussel, a nineteen-year-old sophomore at Harding University, is passionate about sharing the truth and love of the Lord through writing. She loves camping, running, playing the piano, and participating in missions. Most of all, she is passionate about knowing, following, and serving her Lord and Savior. Without Him, her stories would mean nothing.
Ashli has battled and overcome an eating disorder, which God used to teach her great truths about who He is and how He is involved in our struggles. Now she desires to comfort others with the comfort that she has received from God. Keep an eye out for Ashli’s regular articles on iBegat.com! (read more…)
I am Raggedy Anne
Though I’ve tried so hard
To be someone else
I try to stand
But I fall
Try to act big
But I’m small
Tried to hide who I am
But people see through me
They see Raggedy Anne
I look in the mirror
Don’t like what I see there
Plain, painted face, red yarn hair
Tattered and torn old calico dress
Look at me, I’m a fashion mess
I long to be a true beauty
So once in my life someone might see me
But I’ll always be
Invisible Raggedy Anne
I go thru my days
Actin’ like I know how to play
Keep the fire burnin’ morning, noon and night
Know the rules, do the job, do everything right
If I’m perfect you see
Someone might love me
But I’m not smart or cool
I’m a silly, stuffed fool
Yeah, I am just ol’ Raggedy Anne
If you look in my heart
You’ll find it’s broken apart
Losin’ at love, life and all that I am
No one seems to see the tears that I cry
Never told anyone how much I want to die
Get up and try each day
To do the best that I can
But when you look at me
You don’t see clever Barbie
‘Cuz I’m just a Raggedy Anne.
Then Jesus sings over me
He sees the things they don’t see
He sees good in my heart
Though it’s been shattered apart
Sweeps me up in his arms
Says he loves me just as I am
And he would go anywhere
Into fire and hell if I’m there
To rescue me
Because he loves this Raggedy Anne
I am Raggedy Anne
And I’m trying’ so hard
To be the best rag doll that
I possibly can
Try to stand
But I fall
Try to act big
But I’m small
And still He loves this Raggedy Anne.
So, I’ll just be His Raggedy Anne
Yeah, I’ll always be His Raggedy Anne.
Gerri Wright is a God-lover, wife, mother of 4 children (ages 15 to 6), dreamer, writer, wonder aficionado, tree lover, and chocoholic. She is an alumnus of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. Gerri lives in Spokane, WA and likes to write poetry, fiction, and screenplays.
No one talk to me; no one get near me: I can’t handle it. Lock the door so no one can come in, and no one can go out. Look in the mirror, see nothing worth looking at. Why do I look this way? Why can’t I look good? Sit and think about my life, and how there’s nothing worth living for in it. The walls are closing in, there’s nowhere left to turn, one thing left to do: end it.
Have you ever felt this way? Like there’s only one option: ending your life. I have, and it’s not something I wish upon anyone.
I was 11 years old, starting 6th grade. I wasn’t strong in my walk with Christ, and I later realized that was the problem. The first paragraph describes how I felt. At school, I focused on my work and nothing else. I went to church and didn’t soak anything in. It was like I wasn’t really living; I was just existing.
If you’ve ever felt like this, please keep reading! The only way to escape the grips of depression is God.
My pastor runs a youth camp for a week during the summer. It was there that I felt God speaking to me, calling out my name; telling me that there was a reason to keep living: Him and His plans for me.
Things didn’t immediately get better—don’t expect them to—but I did start feeling better. It was like a giant weight was lifted off my shoulders. Now, I’m fine. I’m happy. It’s great because I can see God working in my life.
I want all of you to feel the same way. Please, if you feel the way I felt: talk to God. A youth minster, pastor, or an adult that you’re close to will help. God has a plan for you! Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (NLT). Please don’t deprive yourself and the world of that plan.
I’m Haley Faye Snyder. I’ve lived in the same Christian home in Kentucky since I was born. I have one little brother and two loving parents. I go to Westport Baptist church and have my whole life. I accepted Christ into my heart when I was six and then re-committed my life to Him when I was 11 at Boones Creek Baptist Camp. (read more…)
For additional resources check out this book:
By Lisa M. Schab
Despite what you might have been told, the feelings of sadness and hopelessness you may be struggling with are probably not “just a phase” or “something you’ll grow out of.” As many as 20 percent of people your age have symptoms of serious depression, yet many teens and even many adults don’t recognize the signs. Only half of depressed teens get the help they need to overcome these feelings. If you’re feeling depressed, this workbook offers things you can do, both on your own and with a counselor, to feel better.
The activities in Beyond the Blues can help you cope with sad and difficult feelings, find new ways to make friends, and deal with conflicts. Little by little and on your own schedule, you can make small changes in your life that will lead you to a brighter, more enjoyable future.