A few years ago a friend of mine gave me a piece of paper during a retreat with my church. It was a fun weekend with quiet times, campfires, hiking, and talking. I had been going through a rough patch and what was on this piece of paper changed a lot for me. I had not talked to her about anything, it was just given to me as if she knew what I was feeling. I think God puts people like that in our lives at perfect moments. She might not have had a clue but for some reason God told her to give it to me.
This is what it said:
Ending the War With Yourself
"And beloved, if our own consciences (our hearts) do not accuse us-if they do not make us feel guilty and condemn us-we have confidence (complete assurance and boldness) before God."
-1 John 3:21
How often I've called you in love and in tenderness. How often I've sung over you in the night and rejoiced over you in the day. And yet, how often I've heard you curse yourself. How often I've heard your private battle cry against yourself!
Why? Have I waged war against My beloved? Have I instructed you to hurl rebuke and angry insult at My chosen (you)? Am I to wear the uniform of the enemy and take sides against My own?
I am He who calls you to the glorious kingdom of peace and righteousness. I am the One who gives you new life, who yanks sin and hatred from you.
Would you accuse Me of sending you that which I freed you from? When you came, holding your heart out to me.
I lifted you up into My own heart. I see you as a RARE and PRECIOUS GEM fitting perfectly in the Father's resplendent heavenly crown.
I am making a gem out of you.
I am creating a new heart in you.
And now you war against that very heart. You devaluate the jewel of God.
Peace I give you my dear one. Peace to be yourself, and to enjoy being yourself. To speak kindly of yourself is to humble yourself. To hold yourself in esteem is to humble yourself. To be gentle with yourself is to hold Me in esteem.
Because you love Me, end the war with yourself.
-By Laura Ebel (Romans 8:1, 31-39)
I still hold onto this paper and read it when I happen to flip through my journal. It is a good reminder about Who made us and not to look at our bodies as the world does.