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When you feel less than perfect

Just when I want to hang my head for all the ways I mess up, I hear a whisper in my spirit in the early morning: Song of Soloman 4:7 . . .

Photo by Sasha Freemind on Unsplash

With my feet propped on the ottoman, books stacked at my side, I give thanks, pray, and wrestle out a plan for the day. These days I’m reading My Utmost for His Highest, found in the dusty stack of books at the family ranch. It’s about time. Every time I pick it up I know I’m going to have to die to myself just a little bit more.

I grab my thick black Bible, wondering why the Spirit would blow open those pages to the love and sex book, Song of Soloman, to remind me he saw “no flaw in me.”

Seriously? No flaw? “You are altogether beautiful, my love,” the scripture reads, like a whisper to look at myself the way He looks at me. Belly rolls, missed deadlines, temptations, and all.

It’s grace upon grace that helps us walk loved and unashamed. It’s knowing how He sees us — without flaw and without fault — that actually makes us want to live a beautiful life. God looks at us through the lens of total grace — giving us the gift of righteousness through faith in His Son — and He has quite a bit of faith in us too. He actually believes we can take these truths into our spirit, believing we are flawless in His eyes. If He just keeps reminding us, He believes, we will one day get it.

Maybe if we look at ourselves the way He looks at us, we could be so bold to look at others through the same lens. How beautiful the people in our lives would feel if we saw them the way He sees at us: “There is no flaw in you.”

What sweet relief. These words are so healing to my heart. And they actually make me want to go running and do sit-ups, meet my deadlines, and turn away from temptation. He never shames us into living our best life; He woos us with His love.

Ultimately, He challenges us to receive these truths unto ourselves, and be conduits of them as well. To see ourselves as flawless too. To look at others through the same grace-lined lens. You are “altogether beautiful, my love.”

Pass it on.

Yours,

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About the Author: Jennifer

Jennifer Strickland is a wife, mom, TEDx speaker, and former professional model. She is the author of Girl Perfect, More Beautiful Than You Know, and Beautiful Lies, among other books and Bible studies that teach women their worth in God’s eyes. Since leaving the modeling industry, she founded URMore.org, a non-profit ministry that provides resources to hurting women and girls. Her favorite moments are found working on the family ranch with her husband, who she calls “the Cowboy”; in her kitchen, concocting a new version of her famous spaghetti; or spending time with their three precious children.

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING

The honesty that Jennifer uses to tell her story drew our young women in and captured their hearts. She provided them with practical tips that the women use daily to transform their lives. These decisions have caused them to do things differently. We loved her so much, we are having her back!

Chrissie Dunham

Chrissie Dunham, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, TX

Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.

Barbara Brown

Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA

Jennifer has the ability to make you laugh, cry, and see yourself as one of God’s glorious creations — and that is just her warm up! Once Jennifer starts speaking, all you want to do is listen, learn, laugh, and love her. She takes you outside of yourself while helping you see inside of yourself, and does it in such a way that you feel safe, empowered, and capable to embrace all that the Lord is waiting to give you. She opens your eyes and your heart to hear from God in ways you never have. She connects you with others who share similar life experiences — and shines a bright light on the pathway to forgiveness, love, and blessings. Jennifer is also an amazing mother, compassionate, loving wife, and loyal, dedicated friend. Any opportunity women of any age have to hear from her is a gift and one that will produce fruit in their lives.

Lori Kennedy

Lori Kennedy, Outreach Event Coordinator, Riverview Evangelical Church, Bonsall, CA

I just picked up my girls from school today and they both talked all the way home about Jennifer’s presenation. It was a BIG HIT with Middle School and High School kids (both boys and girls). My high school daughter mentioned that she was glad that for once, a speaker focused on girl’s topics instead of sports or boy topics. She said that Jennifer engaged with the boys and made them answer questions too. My middle school daughter said that everyone in the middle school was paying attention too, and that all her friends were very tuned into what Jen was saying. Both girls said that they thought it was fine that the boys were with the girls during the presentation because the boys “needed to hear this stuff too.” 

Mother of two student attendees

Mother of two student attendees of Jennifer's U R MORE school program for boys and girls

If you think Jennifer gets the attention of adults, just see how the teenagers respond! My teenage grandchildren said they wanted to hear more from her and that her book was the only one they’ve ever really enjoyed reading! If teenagers are informed, inspired, and desire more, does anything else need to be said? Jennifer is an unusual voice of truth, integrity, and dignity. She needs to tell the world about her experiences and her victory. She encouraged me, a 70-year-old great grandmother. So, from teens to grans she has something everyone can benefit from.

Dr. Thelma Wells, D.D.

Dr. Thelma Wells, D.D. (Hon.), Speaker / Author / Founder of the Ready to Win Conferences

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