“There’s someone here tonight who needs to hear that you’re beautiful.”
The woman with the microphone paused and searched the audience, as if she was looking for a particular target for her message. Squirming a bit in the pew, Luisa felt as if the woman could surely see her thoughts. At a friend’s insistence, she had agreed to go to this prayer night at a local church. But now she suddenly had a pressing desire to get out of there.
“God wants to tell you that you’re beautiful to Him,” the woman up front continued. “And He’s going to keep saying it until you receive it.”
“Yeah, right,” Luisa thought to herself. “I’ve heard that before.”
The thought came so quickly, so clearly, and it shocked her. Why would she think such a thing? But all at once, she knew the reason. Diego.
A flood of memories came suddenly. Worshiping with Diego in this very sanctuary on a Sunday morning. Sitting with him in the sound booth as he ran the power point presentations for the speaker. Going on walks in the fields behind the church property.
Charming and romantic, Diego had swept Luisa off her feet in a whirlwind relationship. He was the first guy to tell her she was beautiful. The first guy to tell her that he loved her. Luisa brushed it off at first. She couldn’t accept it. “He probably says that to all the girls,” she told herself. “He doesn’t really mean it.” Diego kept saying it, however, over and over again, until she finally started to believe it.
But Diego’s actions didn’t match his words. Though he said he would go to the moon for her, he couldn’t keep his word to meet her when he said he would, or do small things she asked him to do. After many disappointments and broken promises, Luisa started to feel she couldn’t trust him anymore. And she doubted everything he had told her.
Though it had been a few years since the relationship ended, those old feelings of hurt and mistrust were stirred up again as Luisa sat in the prayer meeting. Her relationship with Diego had tainted her view of God’s love and thoughts towards her.
Through her tears, Luisa chose to forgive Diego again, releasing the painful memories. “Help me to receive Your love, and to believe what You say about me.” Slowly Luisa felt a warm presence surrounding her. The truth of God’s words toward her began to sink in and bring healing to her heart – “You are beautiful to Me. I love You.” And unlike Diego or others in her life who had disappointed her, Luisa knew her Heavenly Father meant what He said. She knew she could trust Him.
“How weighty to me are Your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! I try to count them – they are more than the sand; I come to the end – I am still with You.” Psalm 139:17-18 (NIV)