I thought I was being played with like an easily discarded toy.
Lost in my feelings of insecurity, inadequacy, and worthlessness, I begged for love and attention. I wanted someone to validate my existence.
I saw my Casanova as the answer. Even though I assumed he would flee easily, I clung to his flowery expositions on his unfailing love as if they were life-giving oxygen. In my desperation, I worshiped the relationship. In my ignorance, I didn’t see the idolatry.
Ironically, I didn’t honor the relationship; I not only cherished it, I also stepped on it. With fear of rejection driving me, I sought acceptance elsewhere.
I didn’t think it mattered. He could and would easily move on. There weren’t just other fish in the sea; there were much better fish than me.
What I failed to see or understand was how I affected him—that possibly he, too, wanted validation. How could a 15 year old girl grasp the needs of a teenage boy?
Several years later God saw fit to scoop me up in all of my brokenness and loss. He consoled me (as He still does). He loved and accepted me (as He still does). He validated me and gave me a reason to live (as He still does).
Last week I cried. After 30 years of no contact, the boy said, “You made me a better person.” Me? I thought I had nothing . . . gave nothing . . . was nothing.
So I cried. Because that teenage girl, once me, hadn’t understood her worth at the time—that the choices she made, the words she spoke, and the actions she took affected others. Her inward-focused self couldn’t see the influence she had. And that saddens me. It brings me to tears.
Tragically, many teenage girls, some hiding in the bodies of older women, are searching for validation, desperate to feel worthy. Like the ladies in the Dove commercial (see below), they only see their flaws. And it brings me to tears.
Because we don’t understand our worth, we don’t understand the impact we have on others. Like the ladies in the Dove commercial, we don’t recognize our positive features. But, as one lady in the commercial remarks, how we see ourselves “impacts everything.”
Yet God desires for us to listen to Him tell us, “You are my creation and I love you unconditionally. Yes, you! In Christ, you are holy, blameless, loved, accepted, worthy, chosen, My child.” (See Eph. 1) “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ” (Eph. 2:13).
When we accept this truth, we understand our worth and see ourselves as He does. Consequently, that picture affects our choices, words, and actions positively. As His children, His love flows naturally from our hearts and we emulate Him so others will see Him through us.