Monday, May 11, 2009

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made: the Belly Button Ring

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." - Ps. 139:14

Several years ago, in the days following Tony's death, I often joined our church singles group for lunch following Sunday morning services. This was often a group of eight to ten people, some were divorcees with/without their children, some were never marrieds and then there was me... the young widow. We always had a great time together, laughing, eating, sharing stories, and catching up.

One particular Sunday afternoon, one of the college aged daughters came along with her mom for lunch. While we were sitting around the table, the mother turned to her daughter and (in a tattling-like tone) said, "Tell them what you did this week."

All eyes were on Suzy (not her real name). We were all curious. We had seen this child grow up and knew her to be the epitome of purity throughout her high school years. She was the girl who dated the young man who was surrendered to ministry. She was the one who was active in the youth group and that all of the other girls wanted to be like. But when she became a college freshman, all of that changed.

"What?" Suzy inquired.

Her mom said, "You know what I am talking about."

"Oh that?"

Suzy slowly lifted her shirt just above her waistline, only to reveal her new bellybutton ring!

One by one, all of our mouths hit the floor. And the people (particularly those of the male gender) in the group started firing one question after another... Did it hurt? How did they do it? How long do you have to leave it in? How do you clean it? The questions and conversation continued for several minutes while I sat in stunned silence.

Finally, after what seemed like ten minutes of listening to the guys play twenty questions with Suzy, I decided I had heard enough. So I began to look at her, look at the guys and look down at my own (quite round) mid-section... and wondered out loud, "Hmmm... belly-button ring, huh????" Then I shook my head and said, "Nah. I couldn't find mine to pierce it!!!"

We're all made differently, aren't we? The God of the Universe has created each of us uniquely. So why is it that we are always hung up on our appearances? Why is it that we can't just let the Master Designer love us as we are? After all, didn't He design us with a purpose in mind, and don't you think that maybe you fit nicely into that purpose, regardless of what the outer package may look like? Let's not get too caught up on the outward beautification process, but let's learn to focus on inward beauty, and let God love us just as we are. And then let's learn to laugh at and love ourselves the way He sees us.... Beautiful!

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