If people had beauty in their lives, they would learn to create, not destroy.  – Michael D. O’Brien,

p.38,  • Sophia House, a Novel

Because I believed I was ugly, not smart, and lazy growing up, I covered myself with pride – my family’s pedigree (genealogy), social status, positions, possessions, and accomplishments. 

[restrict]  It all looked well and good on the outside but I was drowning in fear and shame.  Fear of making a wrong move and be proven stupid which shames me to the core.  Shame-based people tend to be exhausted a lot of the time.  They spend a lot of energy holding on to our false-self masks and hiding our disowned parts: our talent, inner beauty from radiating our faces, ingenuity – creativity, or our skill to design something new, like cutting cost to make your business grow and flourish.  Life of shame has been compared to holding a beach ball under water.  Virginia Satir compares it to keeping guard over hungry dogs locked in the basement. The repressed parts exert lots of pressure by forcing us to keep their opposites going.

Jesus was right. I may have gained my identity in the ‘world’ but I totally lost my own soul – my true self.

We all have our defining moment when a small crack in the window sparks something in you.  Fear not… take that risk and step out and be pleasantly surprised in finding your soul.  The journey to find the beauty God created within you, that glory that is uniquely yours, may be long and at times strenuous but you’ll discover more of you and learn to embrace you and find peace. You’ll take more risks and find that what you were afraid of were but shadows.

You are a masterpiece being restored.   Isaiah says of Jesus  “A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.”  He is still at work in our lives and no matter how damaged our emotions are… he doesn’t give up on us.  And even if you’re depressed and feel like you’re a toast, he will not snuff or pinch the light out of you.

Picasso says “Art is war. Art is an instrument for attack and defense.”  I was bewildered when I read that but as I thought about it I said to myself, “what do I know?”  This one thing I know – when God is sculpting your, it will hurt and your heart will feel like it’s breaking in two; the more you find your true self, the more you’ll feel like you’re at war.  Those who controlled you will continue to remind you of stupidity, your ugliness and your laziness in a matter of speaking.  My mentor said once to me [as artwork], “Impressionism is dead.  Now the real work of art is being worked on… be still and know that the Great I AM is holding the chisel.  You’re in good hands.

The more the Lord restores your true self, his masterpiece, you’ll find yourself doing good things without expecting anything in return and you’ll compliment others without fear of shame.  [/restrict]