Are you messing up God's plan?

{Lies Can Really Twist Context}

For years and years of my life, I fought with raging insecurity. Between an eating disorder, a constant obsession about my appearance, and an ever-present fear that I was hideous, I was convinced that I would never be enough.

I prayed and prayed that God would release me from it. I wanted out. But I didn’t know how to get there.

I attempted at every turn to let His Word sink in regarding His thoughts of me. Except, I was convinced that if God had really made me beautiful and if I really was “fearfully and wonderfully made,” like He says, then somewhere along the way, I must have messed that all up.


It’s pretty sad, looking back. The enemy whispered twisted versions of Scripture into my ears like you wouldn’t imagine, and I believed every word.

I remember one youth retreat in early high school: for three entire days, all I ate was an apple and two of those mini boxes of raisins. I justified it with…get ready for this…Song of Songs 2:5, where it says, “Strengthen me with raisins, refresh me with apples…”

Talk about taking things out of context!

I wish I could cram three cheeseburgers into my frail little fifteen-year-old face that weekend, along with some in-context truth and maybe a hug or two!


My appearance was an idol that I was worshipping in place of my Creator. And I didn’t see it that way, because I believed a lie that, in order for something to be elevated to “idol” status, I had to actually like whatever it was.

Far from the truth.

Sometimes, the things we hate the most are the very things we let take God’s rightful place in our lives. It takes a shocking amount of energy and focus to hate something. Especially when that something is yourself.


{A Taste of Freedom}

In the summer of 2005, God, in His grace, arranged everything that was necessary for my heart to be healed and for me to recognize and lay down that idol of insecurity.

Someone told me that God actually had a pretty big problem with the way I thought about myself. “You hate what God loves,” this person told me. And it hit me like a ton of bricks.

I also learned that if I was really going to be able to “love my neighbor as myself,” then I would need to actually start loving myself:

  • Loving what God calls precious in His sight (Isaiah 43:4).
  • Loving His craftsmanship (Psalm 139:14).
  • Loving that He made me in His image (Genesis 1:27).
  • Loving that He actually rejoices over me (Zephaniah 3:17).

I needed to learn to love myself the way God does, so that I could pour that same love out to other people—people He loves the same way.


I finally understood that He hadn’t just created me and then left me to ruin His masterpiece, but rather, He was continuing to shape me and re-make me—in His very image—every step of the way.

Do you know that the same is true of you?

“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do,” (Ephesians 2:10).

In the Greek, handiwork actually translates as God’s masterpiece, His work of art, His poem. How amazing is that?!

God wrote us like poems! He carved us as fine art.

And He doesn’t leave us hanging. We are His beloved and He promises to finish the unique work He started in each of us.

“…he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 1:6b).


After so many years of clawing my way through awful thoughts about myself, I was able to taste freedom from those bitter insecurities.

I found myself in Christ, and I was able to let His identity wash over me. And I didn’t look back. When I faced the mirror after that, I was satisfied. Because I knew the truth that the very King of the universe was enthralled by my beauty (Psalm 45:11), that His craftsmanship was always good, and I was going to honor Him in that.

To Choose Joy_Captive Cards_Worry Cleanse_Bible Study_Becky Bennett


{Not the Change I Expected}

And then, over a decade later, I began itching. Itching because I felt like I didn’t have any choices in my life—that I was bound by a disease and couldn’t decide so many of the when’s or where’s or what’s in my life.

I was itching for a change. Itching for control.

So, I made an on-the-spot decision to cut off all of my hair. Hair grows, I know, but the particular brand I come with really crawls. And after I had cut it all off, I started feeling pretty unsure of myself. I began to remember my fifteen-year-old self.


And then, I decided I didn’t like the color. I wanted my hair to look like it had when I was younger—light and bright. I didn’t, however, feel like I could handle being away from my kids any more than was already necessary by the numerous doctor’s appointments and physical therapy visits I have to make on a regular basis, or like we could swing the cost of having it professionally colored.

So, I made another snap decision. I picked up a seemingly innocent little box of color. And decided to do it myself.

It. Sure. Did. Get. Lighter.

And, oh, my friend, was I in shock when I looked at the mirror! I didn’t even need to turn the light on. My head was radiating. As in…glowing in the dark.


I called a close friend who somehow, by the power that kindred spirits have, understood a few of my words through the middle of my sobbing so that she could comfort me. And another dear friend came immediately to my rescue with purple shampoo. Aren’t girlfriends such a gift?!


But it didn’t stop those insecurities from years-past to creep back in. The voices from my past started to whisper all sorts of lies into my ears. Lies that I’ve laid at the feet of Jesus over and over again—longing to hear His truth.

Lies like:

  • See, you can’t make decisions…
  • You’re so ugly…
  • You’ll never measure up…
  • You’re always wrong…
  • This will never get better…
  • You’re worthless…
  • You are unlovable…

And then I ended up feeling guilty just for entertaining the lies in my mind.

{But I'm Not the Answer}

How quickly I try to be my own solution. How quickly I think that I can make everything better if I work hard enough or think hard enough or even pray hard enough.

Jesus is the solution. He is gracious. And He is kind. He isn’t expecting us to fix ourselves, because He wants us to lean into Him. He wants us to pour out our aching hearts to Him. He wants to hear us. He cares about us—and about shaping our hearts—in each and every moment we walk through or wallow through.

Sometimes, we think God must be too big to care about the minute details of our lives. Like really terrible hair color experiences. We convince ourselves that it’s selfish to care about those things because someone, somewhere, is having a much more difficult day than we are.

But when we do that, we ignore the way that Jesus cared so intimately for the individual lives of each of the people He encountered in the verses we read about Him.


I love these words from Jennie Allen:

“God is big, but he moves into the small. . . When God is only big and only about eternal heavenly things in our minds, we miss out. . . He creates generations and billions of interesting humans, and then he takes the time to write intimate and unique moments for each one of them,” (Jennie Allen, Restless).  
Becky Bennett To Choose Joy

So, knowing that He is in every moment, I’m going to make lemonade from my fancy new lemon-colored hair. I’m going to throw on some bright pink lipstick and pretend it’s what I intended it to look like. And, knowing that He is the writer of the story, I’m going to wait…

  • To wait on time to lessen the effects of the bleach.
  • To wait on God to soothe my soul with His truth and draw me deeper into Himself.
  • To wait on a Savior who always rescues my heart when it starts to wander down dark and muddy roads.


What are you wrestling with? 

...Remember that you're not alone and that God is fighting for your good.

Are you worried that you're messing up God's plans? 

...Remember that you can't. I don't know about you, but I'm ridiculously comforted by that. He is the One writing the story and He works all things for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28). All things. For good. For His glory and our good.

How do you need to wait today? 


It’s pretty funny that this all happened just days before our “Captive Cards” make their way into the To Choose Joy shop. I so need these everyday reminders of how to give my messy thoughts to Jesus and focus on His truth.

The "Captive Cards" go on sale on Tuesday, April 26th!

The "Captive Cards" go on sale on Tuesday, April 26th!

As we wrestle with all sorts of ups and downs in our lives, let’s remember that God is writing all of our intimate and unique moments as integral pieces in the much larger story that He is working on. Nothing we do—no matter how seemingly insignificant or silly—is outside of that story.

Let’s remember that if we know Jesus as our Savior, then He really is just THAT: He is our Savior. He is the One who draws us out of darkness and who draws us deep into Himself. We don’t do the drawing. He is the One who shapes us and molds us. We are His artwork and His poetry.

And no matter how much of a mess we might make, we cannot ruin His plans.