BeYOUtiful my friend! -by Traci Klein

As I sit here bundled up in my ‘comfy cozies’, a fuzzy plush blanket over my lap, I watch the sunlight as it shimmers and dances playfully reflecting off the cold waters of the intracostal waterway. From where I sit in the comfort of my home I am oblivious to the bitter cold outside. Just watching the sun’s rays’ dance across the water casting beautiful, radiant, and sparkling lights one would never know the cold mysteries that may lay beneath. 
This makes me think of life. Of my life, maybe even yours as well. Most of us, at some point in our life have experienced a cold spell. A cold spell could be a time of tragedy, a time of heartache or loss. It may be a time of great turmoil, where you feel cold and alone and in need of God’s warming touch. 
These times are different and come at different seasons for each of us. I remember the most pivotal one for me. At that time of my life, I had the head knowledge that God loved me and had a brighter warmer plan for my life, but my heart knowledge wasn't there.   I could say it, and believe it about anyone else, but there was a deep invisible barrier blocking the reality of God’s best for me that kept it from penetrating into the dark waters of my heart. 
I never understood how some women just understood, fully embraced, and lived Gods unmerited Grace without doubting just a little bit their worthiness to receive it. Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying. I know none of us are worthy, that’s why we need Him. What I am talking about is how I looked at myself. 
During this particular point in my life, while I knew the Word and knew it was UNMERITED Grace, I still held on to the shame, pain, and  cold darkness of past hurts and sins. The grasp I held to these dark wounds I kept buried so deep beneath the cold waters I didn’t even realize I was holding on to them! As a result I wasn’t able to let the light of God’s warming love shine into every corner of my heart. 
I knew He loved me…. but then there was that, yes that, you know the thing that says you’re not worthy, you’ll never be good enough to be used like the other beautiful bright shining light of God’s love women. No, you’re not special like her because of that. None of this is true of course but boy does Satan love to remind us of it over and over, beating us up every chance we let him. Let’s face it, we know God loves us but we are not perfect and we are not like her, or her, certainly not as good as ‘that one’! 
So we go on, and love God with all our heart and share His love when the opportunity arises, but we hold that little piece back. Because that little shame, that littler hurt, that past sin, we keep buried and haven’t let it go and grasped the realization and the truth we read in our Bibles. We haven’t allowed them to go from head knowledge to become a reality of heart knowledge in our lives. We believe it for her, and share with others, but we hold that little piece back when it comes to ourselves. This act of holding it back keeps that invisible barrier up and prevents us from experiencing the fullness of God’s love and allowing His light to shine brightly into the dark waters of our soul and warm us. 
I remember the exact day and moment when that invisible barrier was dissolved and the reality of God’s love for me became a POUNDING heart knowledge reality. Despite my past, despite my shame, and the heartaches I had experienced that very moment the walls came down and I realized that I didn’t have to be worthy, I didn’t have be like her, and I didn’t have to be perfect. It was OK… I WAS OK. He loved me, ME the broken mess that I am, the King of Kings loved me and called me by name! I was warm through and through!! 
I know all this may sound silly to some of you, but I had never let go of those things that were buried deep, I never believed I would be good enough to be used like others. That invisible barrier was like an impenetrable force shield preventing me from feeling the fullness of His grace. It is my honest prayer that while you are reading this you have NO idea what I am talking about! Because if you don’t, it means you get it and you’ve always gotten it! It means you’ve never doubted your worth, or had a cold spell in your walk. But if you do understand, if you can relate just a little bit, then I hope you look deep inside and pull out any of those things that are buried deep creating that invisible barrier. Pull them out naming them one by one, write them on a piece of paper and visualize yourself laying them at the foot of the cross. Then, on that piece of paper cross each one off as you give it to the Lord. Find a red pen, or crayon, (borrow one from the kids) and write boldly across the paper “Paid in full.” 
I pray that you be made free from anything that holds you back from feeling the fullness of His love for you so  that this year, 2015, will be the year of warmth and revival in your heart! You are beautiful and loved just as you are, so cling to Him and BeYOUtiful my friend!