Hey, New Women! I posted on Facebook this morning that the picture you see here -- taken moments after my toe surgery on Wednesday -- is probably the best photo of me ever taken. Why? Because this is an x-ray of a perfect set of toes. MY toes.
None of them are trying to overlap the one next door. There are no weird bone bumps, no screws that have shifted from their intended places, no unhealed incisions in that big metatarsal. It's NORMAL!!
Which means that as soon as the work the surgeon did to MAKE it normal heals, I'll be able to walk without going "ouch" every other step or limping like I just finished running a marathon. So, yeah, it's my fave photo of me so far in my life.
Sure, something could go wrong like it did back in September when I had my osteotomy. My tendons could do something weird again, something the podiatrist had never seen happen before, something that made me unique in a way I never wanted to be. I COULD be right back where I started from six months ago.
And the point in going there in my mind is ...?
Is there any evidence that the problem isn't fixed? No.
Do I believe my doctor when he says he's sure he's found the root of the problem? Absolutely.
Does my sitting around fretting over it contribute to my healing? Not at all.
Does listening to well-meaning friends who say things like, "What's to say the same thing won't happen again?" and "Did you do everything he said to last time?" -- does that soothe the inflammation in my tendon? Are you serious?
And do I or do I not believe that whatever the outcome, God is in this? That God knows the journey I'm on and has my hand, my back -- and my toes?
I have a choice. Either I believe -- or I don't. Everything else hangs on that.
It's the same with the whole self-respect thing. We're surrounded by bone-thin actresses and models telling us to be ourselves while everything about them proclaims the way they are is the only way to be. We're thrown into the Comparison Game everywhere we turn. If we don't fall into the Pixie Pants Syndrome every now and then we're probably living in a commune out in the wilderness of Quebec.
What are we supposed to do with that? We really only have to answer one question:
Do I believe I was made by God to be who I am and my journey is to believe that and live into it -- or not?
Yes or no? No explanation required. No, "I believe it, but there's so much pressure .... I believe it, only nobody around me does .... I believe it except when my own mother says ..."
We can't be like the guy at the pool of Bethsaida who, when Jesus asked him if he wanted to be well, started to whine out a whole list of reasons why it hadn't happened yet. And what did Jesus say? In essence --
"Oh for Pete's sake, pick up your mat and walk."
Why would we even think he isn't saying to us:
"Do you want self-esteem? You already have it -- in me -- because I am telling you that you are loved and unique and beautiful and here for a purpose. Either believe it and start walking. Or don't and continue to allow the heart-broken world to beat you down. "
Believe it. Or don't.
I do, my loves. I believe it for me and I believe it for you.
I was the gawkiest, lankiest, pimpliest, most awkward thirteen-year-old who ever walked the face of this earth. When I was fourteen and really got into my faith, really began to believe that I WAS somebody in God's eyes, things started to change. It's been quite the journey since then. I have my moments of self-doubt -- in fitting rooms faced with a pile of Pixie Pants, in the wings backstage when the introduction begins out there and I wonder who they could be talking about and what am I doing there and ohmygosh. But they're only moments.
99 per cent of the time, I know who I am in Christ. I believe I was beautifully and wonderfully made. I have no doubt that my career has been and continues to be God-led. No one could convince me that I have no reason to respect this Nancy Rue that God has made.
Do I make mistakes? Oh, heck yeah! Self-esteem doesn't come from being perfect. If we think we can ever achieve perfection, we're on an ego trip. Where DOES it come from? From knowing we can't do a think worth doing without God -- and knowing that if it IS worth doing, God will be behind it, in front of it, beneath it, above it and in it.
It's simple. Believe it or don't. Decide for self-esteem -- and before it God-esteem -- or stay stuck believing what people who are so-not-God are saying you. Embrace your faith and soar -- or pick and choose among the Bible passages and become legalistic and sour.
Once you've made the simple choice, what comes after that isn't always easy. Jesus never promised easy or fair or smooth or perfect.
He just promised you You.
So let's discuss that, New Women. Do you believe it or not? What scares you about believing it? What keeps you from deciding that who you are inside is awesome because God created it?
Believing is beautiful, we used to say on the FaithGirlz tour. Say you will -- and see what happens. Just see. Because there is nothing to be gained from believing otherwise.