1976 was one of the worst years of my life. My parents separated and my mom, my brother and I moved in with my grandparents. Now, my grandmother and grandfather were (are) two of my favorite people on the planet, but moving in with them meant starting a brand new school, with brand new people…and that made me extremely uncomfortable.
I can still remember going out on the playground during the first few days I was there. I could hear the boys taunting me from across the monkey bars, “Well, well, well, what do we have here, but a string bean? Who do you think you are, the jolly green giant?” The words went in and they went in deeply. My biological father was (is) 6’4″ and physically, I take after him. I was very tall for my age and kids can be so cruel sometimes. So, I started slumping over to hide my height.
Fast forward to high school and I can close my eyes and go back in time to the exact place where one of the boys I had a crush on yelled down a crowded hall and called me wide load. I was the skinniest I had ever been; not tiny, but fit! From that point on, eating became an issue for me. If so and so thought I was fat, surely it must be true. And oh, the list could go on and on.
There is a saying that sticks and stones may break our bones, but words can never harm us and I just want to go on record to say that that is such a lie. Harsh words can go inside our hearts and minds then wound us more deeply than most outside cuts or bruises ever do. Words can be replayed over and over until they become the truth to which we ascribe value.
So, after becoming a Christian, one of the scriptures that really opened my eyes has been, “Life and death are in the power of the tongue.” It has helped me see that our words have a lot of power. Knowing that harsh words wound us, I believe that healing words can restore us. Therefore, it has been my mission to speak positive affirmations both to myself and to others every chance I get.
I have a daily routine that I share with my students. I start it out by getting them to close their eyes and picture a place that makes them feel happy and safe. Then they repeat some of these affirmations after me:
- I know that I am special and that I am loved. I am surrounded by love. I am supported by love. I am loved more deeply than I could ever imagine.
- I am a great listener. I listen and follow directions the first time I am asked.
- I do everything without complaining or arguing.
- I am safe and I can express myself freely.
- I pay attention to what I am learning and I can do great things.
- This is who I am and who I will always be. (I end on this note because I want them to continue with these understandings about themselves long after they leave my care.)
These affirmations are based on scripture and we know that scripture has the power to transform someone’s thinking and ultimately someone’s life. I believe people need to hear these things spoken out loud to them on a regular basis. I know that it is that powerful.
So, today, as you take the time to BeLoved Completely, soak in the following scriptures – first for your own self and then as it overflows out of your heart, ask the Holy Spirit to show you someone that you can speak these words to for encouragement.
Scriptures for meditation:
- I am loved. I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love, I have drawn you to myself. Jer. 31:3
- I am treasured. For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
- I am secure. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:39
- I am pleasing to God. For the LORD takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation. Ps. 149:4
- I am on His mind. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jer. 29:11
- I am lovely. How beautiful you are, my darling,how beautiful! Your eyes are like doves. Song of Solomon 1:15
- I am the apple of His eye. …for whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye- Zech. 2:8
- I am unique. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Ps. 139:14
- I am a new creation. 17Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2 Cor. 5:17
- I am called to do great things. All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 2 Cor. 5:18 – 20