because I am loved

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Looking back, it’s easy to see.  Perfection was the game.  Love was the prize.

I did everything I could to obtain it.  I was desperate to be perfect.

I studied day and night.  Nothing less than a 4.0.  I set the curve on every test.  I wrote perfect papers.  If the teacher asked a question, I knew the answer.

I would excel and people would approve.  They would sit close to me for a chance glimpse at my paper or fight to be in my group for a project.  The praise felt good and the lie sunk deeper into my heart.

Lie #1~ if you are smart enough, someone will love you.

I went off to college and the stakes got higher.  “Friends” flocked to the biology lab for late night study sessions.  I had a study date at least once a week.

I began to believe that this was the answer.  I worked harder and got more degrees.  It began to drive me.  I started to thrive on excellence and perfection.

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Then one day it wasn’t enough.  I had to be more.

Somewhere between graduation and a broken heart, I switched lies.

Lie #2~ if you are thin enough, someone will love you.

In less than 4 months I dropped 75 lbs.  I became obsessed with dressing well and the number on the scale.

The attention was a fatal cocktail.  There was a formula to be followed and the results seemed obvious.

If I could be smart enough or thin enough, I would be loved.

I gave everything I had in the name of love.  I had finally found it.

Then one day it wasn’t enough.  I couldn’t be enough.  I couldn’t be perfect.  I couldn’t be all that he wanted.

The perfect little life that I had built came crashing down.

He left anyway.

In the tears and brokenness, I plea, isn’t there anyone who will love me for who I am? How could I be this horrible? What do I have to do to earn love?

I find that I don’t even know who I am.  Everything I know about myself is fake.  It’s what I thought I had to be.  The world proved it true.

In the darkness I find that love is none of the things I made of it.  I see for the first time a God who has always been there, waiting for me to notice.

I find that while I may never be enough for this world, I am already enough for my savior.  He absolutely adores me.  He loves that I try hard.  He loves that I fail without Him. He loves that I MUST have the bed made everyday.  He loves that I crave root beer when stress mounts high.  He loves my laugh, my smile, and he is pleased with me.

He unashamedly loves me.  I don’t have to do anything to earn it.  He freely gives it.

He has changed my motivation. I no longer do things in an effort to be loved, but I strive to be better because I am loved.

I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.  Jeremiah 31:3

Your turn~

What lies have you believed about love?  How has God proven his love for you?

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Comments

  1. ever since I read this post- http://lysaterkeurst.com/2011/05/because-sometimes-we-forget/ -  it has been stuck in my head.  He is well pleased with me- not my works, or who I am trying to be- but with my identity- daughter of the King.   Oh how I’ve scrambled after those same lies you mentioned…. but I’m coming to realize just being His is enough!

  2. Talithaculver50 says:

    Kim, I am Lauren Snellings mother. She asked me to pray for you a couple of years ago when your husband left and I have periodically asked her how you are doing. My ministry heart is mentoring young women and I have had such a heart for you even though you haven’t known. I want to encourage you in this blog. I am sure that many lives will be changed and perhaps marriages saved because of it. Don’t ever be discouraged in doing this.  I am sure it so painful at times and yet, when you point others to Jesus, the best blessings will be all yours. Sorry for the long comment. I just felt compelled to “speak” with you today. Hugs and prayers across the miles.

    • Thank you for your support, encouragement, and prayer.  Your words have brightened my heart today.  I long to help other women walk through the fire with dignity.  God has been so faithful to me.  He is the lover of my soul!

  3. amberscavo says:

    The world is poised to teach our kids where their worth lies….. academic success, extracurricular activities, sports, test scores, college acceptances, job offers, cars, big houses, tiny waistlines, “happy” marriages and kids, and the list goes on.  Trying so faithfully to bind my kids’ hearts to God and not to this world. I learned the hard way, too. My parents thought they were doing everything right, but my heart was tied to a sinking truth. It was a long, grueling swim to get my feet on solid ground- almost cost me my life. Rejoicing everyday to be standing on God’s solid truth today.

  4. Love this girl.  I totally believed the lies of being smart and being thin, also.   This totally resonated with me.  And, just like you, the guy(s) I was trying to impress never stuck around.  I’m so glad you’re learning to lean on your Lord, who loves you just the way you are. :)

  5. Rommelandstarla says:

    The same ones you have have . Love you and thanks for posting.

  6. I am also learning it is less about doing and more about being.  Being HIS and abiding in HIS love that will never fail.  Great post!

  7. My husband walked out 2 years 5 months and 14 days ago. He told me he hadn’t loved me in 2 years if ever. My son was almost four, my daughter 18 months. I instantly found man after man to fill my husbands place so I wouldn’t be alone. I kept trying to cram them into his mold never realizing the mold was broken and it would never work. God brought me to the end of my self almost a year ago today… And it was the best place I’ve ever been. I finally let the tears come and I grieved over the death of my marriage. I have been in a relationship for almost 5 months and it is by far the healthiest relationship I’ve ever had. I pray that God continues to heal you and I all the days of our lives.

  8. Colleen McGarry says:

    I’ve gone through the “smart enough” lie and the “thin enough” lie, but certainly the most pernicious has been the “holy enough” lie.

  9. Tara_pohlkottepress says:

    oh this is as beautiful as it is powerful. thank you for your words.

  10. Kelli Woodford says:

    You are definitely singing my song here . . . the similarity of detail is uncanny.  Because we can’t comprehend WHY an eternal, infinite, amazing God would love wretched us like He does, we are tempted to disbelieve it is so.  There are some things just so wonderful because they are so ridiculous  . . . and so true. 
    “His mercy endures forever . . . ” oh, absurd love that will not let me go.

    Beautiful post.  Puts me on my knees.

  11. Hisglorygirl says:

    Such a great post! May you continually find Him to be all that you need.

  12. Anonymous says:

    what an eye opener! I too believed that I had to be thin,good looking,servile. God has shown me He LOVES ME with all my imperfections. I have been overweight for some years now, but now , instead of moaning all the time about it to myself and poor DH I can Thank God for giving me the extra weight. It proves to me that GOD LOVES ME just as I am. Striving for perfection is wrong. I pledge to stop complaining. 

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