When my feet hit the floor each morning, reality usually smacks me in the face. Depending on the day, it may go something like this: head straight to the coffee pot, “do not pass go”, because the coffee is more important than the $200 in Monopoly money at this point, drink half of said coffee, forget where I left the mug, which is now cold, reheat it in the microwave and forget about it, answer my 8 year old’s 724 questions before 8am, remember I have a meeting and should have gotten up earlier, find the least wrinkled shirt in my closet that looks like I put my outfit together the night before, and head off to teach the leaders of tomorrow. Then drink more coffee, because half a cup is never going to suffice. Ever.
It’s totally full of glamour and the things that Hallmark movies are made of. Especially the coffee stain on my shirt and the prayers that dry shampoo really holds true to its claims, because I didn’t have time to shower. Maybe YOUR reality is a Hallmark movie, with a happy ending all tied up in a pretty bow, with all the feels and a cute little house straight from Better Homes and Gardens. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for you, if so. Truly, I am. It just doesn’t happen to be my reality.
I live in a subdivision that is very close to a busy highway. So, I travel said highway a lot. It’s a prime billboard spot and believe me, there are hundreds of them. They are always changing them so I’m pretty in tune with the newest ad that stands proudly on the side of the road, ready to entice drivers to frequent this establishment, utilize this hospital…do people choose healthcare based on a billboard? I’ve often wondered. Okay, I digressed. This new one caught my eye a few days ago. Jewelry store billboards are in my face about ever six feet around here. Their slogans are meant for men to stop what they’re doing, take the next exit, find a jewelry store, and purchase something for the women in their lives. Because why wouldn’t they want to do that on their way to work? I mean, we deserve it, am I right?? Not really, but seriously, these ads. Here’s the newest one: picture a huge diamond ring, like a billion carats or something, with the slogan, “Alter her reality.” That’s it. Just three words and some bling. Makes you think, doesn’t it. If my reality is coffee stains and missing deadlines, some jewelry would certainly change all that. It would be a Hallmark movie in the making. Man walks in to the love of his life’s classroom, hands her a neatly wrapped little box, tears flow, people clap, and the woman’s reality is forever changed. The End.
Don’t get me wrong, if someone wanted to alter my reality, it’s not as if I’d reject said jewelry. Let’s be honest, here. But the more I thought about that sign, it was like Jesus was saying, “Really? THAT would alter your reality for the better and you’d find eternal happiness and contentment?” Well, it wouldn’t hurt, right? Then I got all convicted and thought, what if my reality is what it is because that’s exactly what Jesus wants it to be? That no one has control over my reality if I’m a daughter of the King. I may not like my reality sometimes. The pain it brings, the hurt it reminds me of, the fear I have of the future, or the fact that there are questions that I hold onto so tightly that may never be answered this side of heaven. I don’t think any amount of diamonds could possibly ease those deep wounds and doubts I have. The tears we cry at night, after our children go to bed, so they don’t see us. The loneliness we feel. The worthlessness that creeps in, ready to blind us to God’s truth. The guilt we have over our past. The fear we have of our future.
Oh sisters, please believe me when I tell you I’m with you. I feel you. Those days that you feel you have contributed nothing to make the world a better place, that you’ve certainly not shown the love of Christ to your children because sometimes they are hellions. Yes, I said it. You know it’s true. We are tired, forgot to buy milk and bread at the store, and fed our kids dry cereal for dinner. Haven’t spent time in prayer and the Word in a few days because life is spinning so quickly, and we can’t make it stop. Yes. All of that.
Why do we feel so inferior and less than adequate? We are so hard on ourselves and look for worth in all of the wrong places. In other people, our jobs, our ability to parent, our involvement in church, and the list goes on. We curse our realities because they aren’t that lovely and glamorous sometimes. And we look across the street and wonder how that woman doesn’t have coffee stains on her white shirt. And her kids’ socks match. Whatever.
As hard as it is, can we all rally together today and remember that we are children of the mighty One? We are basically royal princesses. The stuff that Hallmark movies are made of. No one can alter our reality because Jesus has our backs. The ultimate Father loves us, His daughters, and doesn’t care one bit about our kids’ socks and the dishes in the sink. He sees us as beautiful daughters that were made for a holy experience with Him. He knows the tears we cry, the fears we harbor, and the loneliness we feel. And when we realize that He is the One who was meant to fill those voids, we can finally let go and bask in the freedom to be ourselves. Daughters of the One who created us in his image.
Psalm 45:13 says, “The king’s daughter is all glorious within.” (King James, KJ) Ask yourself what it means to be a daughter of the King. A princess, no less. On those days we don’t feel very glorious and glamorous, He sees us for what we really are. No billboard is going to change that.
We are as royal as they come, friends. “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (New International Version, NIV, 1 Peter 2:9). Look in the mirror today and believe this truth. We are His special possessions, made to declare His goodness and light to a fallen world. We can do that with coffee stains on our shirts. And if someone buys us jewelry, it will only distract from the fact that we didn’t cook dinner for our kids the night before and don’t remember if we showered. We are royal, though. Through and through.