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Activated August 2009

Beauty and Self-Worth - August 2009

If you have a problem with the way you see yourself, look again. God created you in His own image, and He loves you more than you can imagine--just as you are.

01-08-2009
Just as You Are
Just as You Are

Dressing my three preschool sons alike seemed sensible at the time. It made clothes shopping easier, for one, and because they were brothers with similar builds and complexions, they looked good in the same clothes. At home it gave a sense of order, however superficial, to a household with three little boys in perpetual motion, and in public it showcased what I was sure was the most adorable set of kids ever. On a deeper level, it appealed to my sense of equity. I didn’t love one above the others, and had determined to never say or do anything that...

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01-08-2009
The Pottery Exhibition
The Pottery Exhibition

The display cases at a pottery exhibition I visited recently were filled with items, large and small, some functional and some decorative, but all crafted with care. Practical coffee sets and elegant vases, ordinary fruit bowls and intricate ornaments, plaques and plates and figurines, mugs and jugs, jam jars and soup tureens, teapots, coffeepots, and sugar bowls—each item spoke of its creator’s passion and attention to detail. The art of fashioning clay into bricks, tiles, or porcelain objects is one of the oldest known to the human race.

Each item started off as a lump of clay, more or less. What...

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01-08-2009
Beautiful You!
Beautiful You!

If all the flowers in the world were one color, or if there was only one type of tree, it would get boring after a while. Beauty is found in variety—the varying types and textures, hues and shades. I don’t understand why people try so hard to all look alike. What’s the beauty in that? I look at these models walking down the runway, and while many of them have symmetrical chiseled features‚ great skin, and what the media and fashion industry promote as “perfect” bodies, most of them look similar. They’re perfect examples of cookie-cutter beauty.

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01-08-2009
A New Lease on Life
A New Lease on Life

“That’s not fair” must have been my three most-used words when growing up. It seemed that someone—or everyone—always had it better than me. By my early teens I had a well-developed measure-and-analyze mindset, and I was particularly obsessed with comparing my looks, personality, and abilities with those of other girls my age.

When I came into young adulthood and joined an office team, it was all about measuring up at work. I was convinced that the only way I would ever be accepted or appreciated was if I made up for my relative lack of skill and experience by working harder than...

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01-08-2009
Stunted Growth
Stunted Growth

When I was a kid, I saw plenty of goldfish in the houses of my friends, and I remember wondering why so many people would want to keep such small, unexciting creatures as pets.

Then one day, when I was about ten years old, I went on a school field trip to a botanical garden that had a pond stocked with fish. One especially large, brilliantly colored fish stood out to me.

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01-08-2009
Circumstances
Circumstances

When you’re stuck in a situation that’s not to your liking, you’ll be amazed sometimes at what a little positiveness can do. It’s only natural to see all the things that are wrong with the situation, or to remember all the times you had it better, or to look at those who currently seem to have it better, but you’re not going to be happy that way. You will be happy, though, if you decide that you’re going to be thankful for what you have, rather than dwelling on what you don’t have.

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01-08-2009
The Beauty Survey
The Beauty Survey

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so with this thought in mind I interviewed a few people—male and female, younger and older, and from different backgrounds—to find out what they felt made a person attractive.

Here are some of their answers:

 

What I find most attractive in a woman is when she isn’t overly concerned about what others think of her, when she just acts naturally.—Raymund (29)

 

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01-08-2009
Welcome to Parkville
Welcome to Parkville

At a workshop I attended, art and drama therapist Emily Nash shared an experience she had while working with traumatized children and adolescents at a residential treatment center in the U.S. The boys who attended her class were often combative, prone to negative and self-destructive behavior, and unable to trust adults or even one another. Almost all had histories of severe abuse and emotional neglect.

They routinely brought their negative attitudes into the classroom, as reflected in their foul speech and rough mannerisms.

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01-08-2009
“Who Still Wants It?”
“Who Still Wants It?”

A motivational speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill. In the room of 200, he asked, “Who would like this $20 bill?” Hands started going up.

He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you, but first, let me do this.” He proceeded to crumple the bill.

He then asked, “Who still wants it?” Still the hands were up in the air.

“Well,” he replied, “what if I do this?” And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and...

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01-08-2009
“Beauty Marks Removed”
“Beauty Marks Removed”

My heart skipped a beat at the sight of the beautiful sign—not beautiful in an aesthetic sense, but beautiful because of one magical phrase: FRECKLES AND BEAUTY MARKS REMOVED. To my eager eyes, those words seemed written in silver and edged in gold, for they held a promise of freedom from the thing I had always hated most about myself.

Things, actually—seven of them, dark enough to pass for careless spatters of ink by a Creator too busy to notice His mistake. Since I had never seen so many dark “beauty marks” (who invented that cruel term?) on anyone else, the...

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01-08-2009
Hear from Heaven
Hear from Heaven

The Bible’s book of 1 Kings includes the story of the prophet Elijah. Chapter 19 recounts the tumultuous episode when he was running for his life from wicked Queen Jezebel and hiding in the wilderness. After a while God led Elijah to go to Mount Horeb. There God told Elijah to leave the cave where he had taken refuge and stand before Him. A strong wind tore into the mountain and broke nearby rocks in pieces; then there was an earthquake; then a fire; then a “still small voice.”1 God was not in the wind, the earthquake, or the fire,...

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01-08-2009
That Person in the Mirror
That Person in the Mirror

Each person is a V.S.P. (Very Special Person) because we are each created in the image of God.

Desmond Tutu

 

Friendship with oneself is all important, because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else in the world.

Eleanor Roosevelt

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01-08-2009
Beauty
Beauty

Physical beauty is short lived.

Psalm 103:15–16: As for man, his days are like grass; as a flower of the field, so he flourishes. 16 For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.

Jeremiah 4:30b: Though you clothe yourself with crimson, though you adorn yourself with ornaments of gold,though you enlarge your eyes with paint, in vain you will make yourself fair; your lovers will despise you; they will seek your life.

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01-08-2009
You’re Special!
You’re Special!

You are part of a magnificent, vast, overall plan. You can’t see that plan, but I can. You can’t see how beautifully you fit in with the overall panorama of life and the balance of the universe, but I can. Someday you will see it too, and you will marvel together with Me at how wonderfully it all came together and how perfect it all is.You are unique. There has never been a person like you, nor will there ever be another just like you. That’s one of the things I like most about you.

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