Jen's Journal

Jen's Journal

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

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

“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”

Nancy Ortberg

Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church

“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”

Allie Marie Smith

Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made

One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”

Thelma Wells

Thelma Wells, D.D. (Hon), President of Woman of God Ministries
As a teacher, participator, and observer of public speaking for most of my life, I’ve come to realize that many speakers make one of two mistakes when interacting with their audience (especially when that audience is mainly teenagers.) They either expect their audience to climb up to their level (which feels unattainable to the crowd) or they step down to the level of their listeners (which feels cheap and pandering.) The best speakers meet their audience where they are and lead them up to where they want them to be. This feels genuine. This is what Jennifer did over the last few days at our school.
Jennifer Strickland is a funny, engaging, dynamic speaker. She shares truth with authority and credibility that comes from both experience (her story is powerful) and an obvious depth of study in the Bible. The ideas she presents about Value, Identity, and Purpose are truths everyone needs to hear.
I heartily recommend her for your conference, school retreat, or any event where you want your people to be encouraged and challenged with deep, impacting truth.

Andrew Doan

Andrew Doan, Concord Christian Academy, Concord, NH

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