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Cure for the Insecure

It’s officially summer here in the Philippines! Summer means having sun-kissed skin and extra-bodyweight, at least for me (because I once heard someone who said that if you have not gained weight or have darker skin during summer that means you have not enjoyed the season). Having been to the beach already, I now have a darker complexion compared to my natural skin color. In just a week, I already heard of countless compliments from different girl friends even from strangers on how they like my “tan”. I really love having this I-went-to-the-beachskin.

One thing bothers me about having this temporary complexion is that I cannot understand why the women who say they like my summer tan are also the same women who are after having fairer skin. In fact, I even heard one who informed me before that she envies women like me who were born with naturally fair skin. Now that my skin is no longer fair due to constant sun exposure, she still envies me? She envies me when I’m fair and she envies me now that I have a tan complexion. Obviously, the problem is not with my skin color.

Whenever people tells me that I’m getting fat, I only replied with, “Did I get ugly?” because why would I fret being fat? Fats can only make me look unfit but never ugly. So, when insecure women tell me I get darker, I also respond with, “Am I ugly with this skin color?” because then again, I know I’m beautiful in whatever shape, size and color. Don’t get me wrong here. The beauty that I’m talking about goes beyond what meets the eye.

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Acceptance, Confidence, and Security are the things I know (and have) that battle and cure one of the cancers of society called Insecurity.

The society can never have a single standard for beauty, but you can always ACCEPT your own beauty. There are women who wants fairer skin because they have brown complexion, while women who are fair uses tanning lotions to get darker skin. See? Why not accept your own color? or your weight? At least there’s one person in this world who accepts your beauty for whatever it is.

It takes CONFIDENCE to show that you have fully accepted your own beauty. Even when the weighing scale told me that I’m already obese, I still confidently wear cute girly dresses. Even when I am surrounded by long-legged ladies, I still confidently walk around them with my chin up, chest out and my flabby stomach in. Why would I let other people stop me from showing the “fearfully and wonderfully made” creation of God in me? If you know and believe that God created all things as good, pleasing and perfect, then why will you be insecure? Aren’t you created by God too?

When I came back after my summer getaway, I showed some of my pictures to my mother. I told her that those pictures are unfiltered because the beauty of the place does not need to be filtered. Then she told me that I should have filtered my size. Ouch! What a comment from my own mother! If I am insecure, I could have been offended by those words. But, nah! I took that lightly. Why? Because I look like my mother, if she calls me ugly or fat, then I can just say, “I look like you, Ma. If I’m ugly that is because you are ugly” and we would just laugh at it.

In the same way, if we know and believe that we are the daughters of the King of kings, then we should act likewise. Is there a princess who is insecure of her status? If the all-powerful God is your dad, then will there be anything to be insecure of? I hope that when you finally have an answer to this question, you’ll be able to accept your own kind of beauty, walk confidently in it, and be secured with the fact that you are God’s masterpiece.

Be secured with the fact that you are God’s masterpiece.

“You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you.” – Song of Solomon 4:7

“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” – Psalm 139:14

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” – 2 Corinthians 4:16

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Like an Accident

A personal reflection on Psalm 139 

My mom had me at the age of 20, I may see myself as an unwanted and unplanned child like a tragedy and an accident to the life of my mother. However, I was 15 years old when my mom send me a message saying, “You are not an accident.”

When I finished college as a scholar and with countless achievements since grade school, I teased my mom saying, “I’m the most beautiful disaster in your life”, she just laughs. My mom was right, I am not an accident. There may be people who looked down on her when she had me at an early age, but I grow up hearing praises from different people to mom for having me as a daughter. For 22 years, I know, I lived a life that my mom can’t regret but a life that she can boast.

I believe God didn’t played dice when she picked my mom to have me and the different people who had been part of my life. God arranged everything.

13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

God planned me. He knows how many hair strands I will have, the size of my shoes, the school that I will go, the friends that I will meet, the thoughts that I have written, the places that I will be visiting, the man that I will marry, and the kids that I will have. He knows everything. I can’t hide anything from Him, for where I am there he will be, Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 

I can never run away from Him, I may be lost but He knows how to find me. You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. No one can ever escape God, for He knows everything – our hearts, thoughts, ways, even our so-called secrets.

I am not an accident, no one is, for God orchestrated everything. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

At times that I feel insignificant or not beautiful, I would look at myself in the mirror and say, “I’m a reflection of God, for I am created in the image and likeness of God; I am a princess, for I am the daughter of the King; I am beautiful, for I am fearfully and wonderfully madeEven before God created the heavens and the earth, I know and believe, that He had me in mind.