It’s a dark, cold night. I’m standing outside with my friends. Laughing, happy. Sparklers light up the night sky as we write our names in the air. As we write whatever our hearts desire. No one is really looking, and even if they were, I doubt they could even make out what I’m writing. My deepest, heart felt desire. To be just like them. To be skinny. To feel like I belong.
My new year’s resolution is to lose weight. It always is. I’ll try every fad diet on the market, desperate to be thinner. Desperate to fit in. But none of them ever work.
I have many new year’s celebrations like that one. Many new year’s resolutions to lose weight. Many years of heartache when my maximum, sometimes over-the-top efforts to be thinner bear no fruit. Many years of tears. Long after I’ve married the love of my life, long long after that cold, dark night.
And now here we are, about twenty years later, in another brand new year. But I have no resolutions this year. Only reflections on the past, and revelations too…
I’m thirty six years old. If I could approach my sixteen year old self, writing her hopes and dreams in the night sky, I’d want to tell her a few things. I’d want to tell her to just be herself. I’d want her to buy herself that pretty sweater she had been eyeing at the mall and wear it proudly because she looks incredible, the thinnest she’ll ever be in her life. And I’d want to just give her a hug, if for nothing else than to let her know even though she’s in for a rocky two decades of amazing highs and deveststing lows, she’ll come out the other side perfectly okay.
Twenty years later, I know why I could never lose weight on all those fad diets I tried. Twenty years later, I’m okay with having a disease that makes me fat. Twenty years later, I’m happy in my own skin – I don’t need to be a supermodel. Twenty years later, I know who I am. And it has nothing to do with the outward appearance, and everything to do with the heart. Twenty years later, I feel beautiful because I am His.
Instead of making resolutions, I’m writing down revelations.
I am who He says I am. A daughter of the King. (Romans 8:5)
The world tells me that I’m worthless, because I don’t look a certain way. But He tells me I am as precious as rubies. (Proverbs 31:10)
I am beautiful. (1 Peter 3:3-4)
I was created for a purpose. (Ephesians 2:10)
I am a shining light. (Matthew 5:16, Ephesians 5:8)
Twenty years later these revelations are more important to me than anything else. Twenty years later, my only hearts desire is to live according to His will. And I’m so thankful that in this new year, these revelations speak truths into my life when the voices of the world seem overwhelming. Twenty years later, I understand to whom I belong.