Sunday, August 23, 2009

"Finding Security In the Check-Out Lane," By Kelli Zaniel

Today’s woman often finds herself knee deep in the trenches of insecurity asking, “what’s wrong with me?” “Why don’t I measure up?” We pick ourselves apart to the point that we become unrecognizable to God. Sometimes, it’s as if Satan tiptoes around camouflaging himself behind every swimsuit magazine or plastic surgery advertisement. He sneaks around town with his big bag of tricks slung over his back anticipating his next opportunity to trip us up. At the right moment he grabs a thick slice of insecurity and tosses it forcefully in our direction. Have you been there?

Being a woman today is extremely challenging. Our outward appearance is constantly scrutinized. The unrealistic images that emerge from our mainstream media have a profound and sometimes crippling effect on us. We remain in constant battle to guard our hearts against the negative influences in our culture. Have you ever stood at the check out counter at the grocery store while the “barely there” models gaze up at you snickering while the grocer does a price check on your king size bag of M&M’s? We compare our “average sized” hips to their “airbrushed to perfection” hips. As a result, we begin wallowing in a mud puddle full of insecurity and negativity. I found myself falling into this trap as I picked up a naked Barbie off my floor. I began thinking, I bet Barbie has never felt bloated a day in her glamorous life. Ken must be a great husband because Barbie has a permanent smile plastered across her fully applied make-up face all day long. I was truly spiraling out of control when I began comparing myself to Barbie.

It is easy to become bombarded and overwhelmed by these ideas. Satan’s deceptive mark is easily observed in our society today. His poison seeps out through the words written in our newspapers and spoken in television programs. I begin to measure my self worth, “insecurities best friend,” by the world’s standard of what is beautiful and significant. Those thoughts are driven and fueled by Satan. We, as women, must reject Satan’s counterfeit attempts to stir up deceptive feelings of insecurity in our hearts. If we allow ourselves to drown in his water of lies, we will become less effective Christians. Once this cunning creature has achieved his goal, he will arrogantly sit back to watch his destruction unfold.

When Satan begins to take the upper hand, how do we fight back? When he swiftly throws out his stone of temptation hoping our fragile legs will buckle and stumble over it, how do we respond? We have three options. We can either trip and fall down the road of worthlessness; dodge each stone and remain unscathed; or grab the stone and beat ourselves up with it. I have done the latter more times than I care to admit.

When the walls of insecurity begin to close in, I need to cling to God, grab hold of His rope of Truth and allow Him to pull me from Satan’s clutches. Jesus is the author of our book of life and is the only One who knows how our story will end. He is the only One who can quench our thirst and satisfy our hunger.

One of God’s promises is that He will be the light that delivers us from darkness. “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the Glory of the LORD rises upon you” (Isaiah 60:1); I will never leave or forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5). When we feel stripped of our pride and self-worth, we can look to our Heavenly Father for reassurance. He never leaves our side. He is always there to remind us how precious we are to Him.

“My grace is sufficient for you, my power made perfect in your weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). If we could fight off temptation in our own strength, why would we need God? He chose me as His dearly loved child and he desires to be my shield of protection when my defenses are down. We can conquer anything with God’s help. Scripture tells us that He helps us because He loves and delights in us. There is nothing that can separate us from His love (see Romans 8:39).

So the next time you fall into the “grocery store checkout trap,” throw on your armor stitched with God’s love and assurance that you are fearfully and wonderfully made (Ps. 139:13-14). He knows and loves every hair on your head, whether it is frizzy or hasn’t seen a good shampoo in days. Step into the light of God’s Truth and never feel unworthy again. The truth is you are very significant to God (Phil. 3:20); you are bright and salty (Matt. 5:13-14); you are complete in Him (Col. 2:10); and by the grace of God, are set free (Rom. 8:1-2).

P.S. I must confess that after writing this, I threw my clothes on over my unshowered body, covered my greasy hair with a hat and grabbed my Big Gulp as I hurried out the door!

1 comment:

  1. Kelli, you and Heidi should co-author a book. I would be the first to buy it! Your words from God are encouraging me daily. Thank you for sharing your heart. You are allowing yourself to be used by God. May many women come to know our Creator and seek His direction in mothering, because of this blog!