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There are so many good stories of how God is giving extraordinary hope to you and through you! Naomi shares what kinds of stories you can look forward to these next several weeks.

And now, a message of hope from Whitney…

Scripture Connection: Genesis 1:1-2:4

As a woman, I know shame like I know a bad haircut (and I’ve had a few). I know what it feels like to react to social expectations by making myself smaller. I’ve learned unspoken rules about when I can or can’t speak. And worse, I’ve conceded when others have thought that I should simply “sit still and look pretty.” I would dare to suggest that most of us know what it feels like to be unworthy, unseen, and devalued.

My story didn’t need a reason to compound shame’s internal conversation, but it only took a few harsh words from someone close to me to leave me feeling gutted. The ultimate betrayal of overstepping boundaries and aiming at my weakness, leading to deep humiliation.

A depressing inner script formed in my brain: What if she was right? What if I didn’t measure up? What if I was the failure she saw in me? And there they were: new neurological pathways forming every time I gave her words, and this feeling of shame, one more thought.

For some time afterward, her sucker punch wired its own highway through my mind. My thoughts raced with no speed-limit sign in sight.

This is what shame does. Shame makes us run as fast as we can from the truth of who we are.

From the very beginning, God created human beings, male and female, in God’s image (Genesis 1:27). You are a unique, worthy expression of God created to show the rocks, the dolphins, the stars, and the trees what He is like.

Our lives might not feel like walking in the cool evening breezes, and the weight of the world might be pressing in on us. But you and I can retreat to a kind of garden. We can go again and again to where we find truth—God’s Word, the Bible—and remember:

God created human beings in his own image.
    In the image of God he created them;
    male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:27, NLT)

You and I are worthy, and the world needs to see God’s unique expression each of us brings. No more hiding or running down neurological highways of shame and untruth. Only the truth of the greatest story of all time deserves to replay in our minds: God created us and deems us worthy.

Ask

In what ways do you struggle to feel worthy?

Pray

God, you made me in your image and breathed your breath of life into humanity. Help me to recognize your imprint on me and to know my worth starts there.

Sow

Sometimes it’s easier to see God’s imprint on others. Look for someone today who you can tell how they reflect God in their uniqueness. Text them, write a note, or call them. It will bless you as much as it blesses them.