I am beautiful.

I have always felt inadequate and ugly. 

I know that was harsh, but I'm just being honest. I can remember as young as third grade, and feeling like I would never be pretty. I had really thick hair, really crooked teeth, warts all over my hands, knees, and elbows, acne, and I was very early going into what we like to call "the awkward stages." I also have a really short space between my nose and upper lip which causes my upper lip to make an arch. As much as we like to think that kids don't recognize the signals that they are in fact not that cute in their current state, there are cues that are dropped and things that kids say around you that make you well aware. 

And to top it off, I had a really funny, beautiful best friend. Icing on the cake. She was a joy to be around and I was proud to have her as my best friend. But I knew my place, and my place was that I was the best friend to the pretty girl.

I felt like I had to perform in order to feel adequate and I had to form a good personality if I wanted to fit in. I actually had these thoughts. I absolutely do not tell you these thoughts to make my little sob story. I'm telling you this because I think that we all have to find ourselves, and sometimes I think this extends far more into adulthood than we like to admit. 

I would like to thank the creator of the straightener as it literally changed my life (not even kidding hahaha). I would also like to thank the makers of Accutane because 9 months on that medication, and I was a new person. Ninth grade was my turning point. I was like "look at me look at me I'm beautiful now. I don't have acne, I don't have braces (I had them for almost 7 years), and I don't have bushy hair!!!" Guess what? I then discovered that I felt fat {{I was NOT in fact fat-but I thought I was}}. 

I don't think it will take long before you realize the point I'm trying to make. If everything was perfect, the stars aligned just right, and all the boys were lining up at my locker, I still did not feel pretty. I still did not feel adequate. Something had to change, and it wasn't something that I learned in one instance, or something that I've completely even figured out yet but I am so many leagues further along. 

Because I can honestly write this with pride, I feel beautiful. I feel beautiful everyday. This isn't about how my hair is done, this isn't about if my make up is fixed or if I'm bloated or if Tanner gives me that affirmation. I look ratchet like 98% of the time with working from home and training all the time. It sounds so cliche, but honestly I find worth and value elsewhere and I know it sounds like it wouldn't work, but it just simply pours into you and then out of you.  

Psalm 139:14  I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

When I think about that sentence, it's so powerful to my soul. I am precisely crafted in the image of my Father, and nothing can separate me from that. There is no pimple on my face, roll on my stomach, or words of affirmation from others that can take that away from me. This world is huge, and we are all very small. We all have huge emotions that really rock us daily, but yet when we look around or even if we share them with others, they politely say all the right answers and then everyone moves on with their day. You pour Him in, and I PROMISE you He will pour out of you. 

I have always prayed for a joy that exudes from the love for the Lord. I didn't know how to get it, and I still always pray this same prayer but I wanted to be one of "those people." I wanted to be one of those people that when you say them you thought "Yes, that confidence and that joy comes from the Lord." He has radically worked through me over time to have this. I feel adequate. I feel beautiful. I truly do.

2 Corinthians 3:18  So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord--who is the Spirit--makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.

I like the wording of this because it says "more and more like him" and I read that as if it's a process. It's not something that's just going to happen. More and more {{over time}}, I will become more like Him as he continues to strip off the veil. He stripped me of the veil of not feeling pretty. He stripped me of the veil of not feeling adequate. He continues daily to work on me. I posted this week on my new instagram @katiespassionatelife that in the midst of struggles I ask myself "Is this burden of God?" and the answer is always no. He does not want us to feel that weight. He wants us to remove our veil and become more like him, who knows that it's not about this task at hand but ultimately about pointing it all back to Christ so why even stress over it. {Easier said than done I know}

Lastly, this does not mean that we should sit in solitude, with no stress, no commitments and become monks (unless of course you're called to I suppose hahaha). I feel I have been called to a purpose, and a purpose to help others feel what I feel. A purpose to make other women recognize the beauty from within that isn't placed on their beauty but also is NOT placed on their personality even, but quite simply placed on the fact that their worth is in Christ and Christ alone, and as you continue to pour into Him, he will pour out of you. 

My cup runeth overrrrrr. 

I have worked through that pretty thing, but I'm still working on that adequacy thing. "You have to be more. You have to do more. You have to be more for more people. You have to be a better friend. You have to be a better believer, marathon runner, triathlete, hybrid athlete, and lifter. You need more followers, and more success in the industry. You need to work on photography of your blog. You need to work on creating more programs, and streamlining work better." Believe me, I am the driver of the struggle bus. Toot toot, coming through! 

So, while I write this blog, I say that we help one another. We help each other to find worth elsewhere, and just relax, take a deep breath, and let the cup run over.

With love and Jesus, 

Katie 

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