By Maura Byrne | Founder of Made in His Image
Recently Made in His Image has received a tremendous amount of emails in regards to therapy. Since I’m only one person, it’s impossible for me to answer them all. It’s my hope that God will use my vulnerability from this post to offer you hope. Please know that I’m praying daily for you.
Each week when I was in therapy, my doctor had me write a list of positive things from the week, as part of my homework. And I thought it would be a really great exercise for you too. Instead of focusing on the negative, how much it hurts, or how far you need to go: focus on the positive, what you are grateful for and write down your progress along your journey of healing.
The positive points below are taken from my journey of years ago and I invite you to read them and then come up with your own positive points each week and keep them in a journal. YOU CAN DO IT! Cling to His Hope. The Father loves you so. He takes delight in you, yes YOU! Let yourself be loved by Him.
1. I looked at myself in the mirror and said aloud, I’m a daughter of God, created in His image and likeness. I am beautiful because my dignity flows from Him. He doesn’t create ugly.
2. A guy at work put his hand on my shoulder and asked me on a date. It made me feel really uncomfortable, but I tried not to overreact and just to relax. I mean seriously, why couldn’t he have just asked me out without touching me?
3. I’ve been on several dates with John. Last time he asked to hold my hand. He promised he would never physically hurt me, so I let him. It actually wasn’t scary. (I can see you smiling right now Dr. Bellet).
4. I tried to be more assertive at work. I did this by not asking what people thought, but instead was confident in my ability as a baker. And I was so proud of myself when I did because the head chef said my biscotti were the best he had ever eaten.
5. I didn’t lock my bedroom door this week.
6. I went running during the day light and tried not to let people staring at me bother me, or the guys that whistled at me. Man, I hate when they do that, it’s so annoying.
7. I went swimming and wore a bathing suit.
8. I wore a sleeveless shirt without feeling self-conscious.
9. I saw my reflection in a window and saw God’s beauty, instead of the ugliness I have usually seen.
10. I decided after three years of being a slave to the effects of Charlie’s addiction to pornography that I wasn’t going to let it have a hold on me anymore. His addiction wasn’t my fault and I am beautiful. I am worth being pursued.
11. I thought about how far I’ve come from college and thanked God for my progress.
12. I remember in college it was hard for me to wear shorts or short sleeves because I was so self-conscious after Charlie’s addiction. And I never wore my hair down because I knew some people would find it attractive, and I didn’t want anyone looking at me. But I did all of those things this week and it felt so good.
13. One night during the week I woke up from a bad nightmare and thought I heard somebody in my room. I got up and looked around my room and told myself that it was just a dream. And I didn’t even lock my door; I was so proud of myself.
14. I tried really hard to look directly into someone’s eyes when I shook their hand. I also gave them a firm handshake.
15. One of the guys at work saw me lifting a 50 pound bag of flour and he offered to help me. My naturally inclination was to say, I got it, because let’s be real, I did. But, I thought about what you said Dr. Bellet about letting people me, especially men, so I said, thank you that would be great.
16. I’m getting more use to physical touch, one of the girls at work gave me a really tight hug and it actually felt good.
17. I let my roommate braid my hair because I had accidentally sliced my finger at work and couldn’t braid my hair. It didn’t hurt to let her touch my hair, it actually felt good to let someone help me.
18. I chose to continue to choose forgiveness.
If you settle for anything less than the greatness that has been made possible for you, you are ignoring the twitch of the Divine weaver on the thread of your life. Let His grace lift you to where in your heart of hearts you want to be. – George Weigel
P.S. You are enough.