When I Look in the Mirror and Hate Myself {Anchored Souls Series}

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To continue our Anchored Souls series, I am honored to welcome my friend Kristi Woods back to the blog. I felt an immediate connection to Kristi’s writing when I discovered we shared the same struggles with the gypsy life. What I love about Kristi’s writing voice is how she isn’t afraid to approach topics that are raw and real. She opens herself up for the sake of others, and it is a true blessing. Please welcome her today as she shares about a vulnerable experience about self-hate and a Spirit-moved transition in her point of view.

When I Look in the Mirror and Hate Myself

I look in the mirror.

The eyes ~ they’re too big at times, too squinty at others.

The mouth? The pencil-thin lines cause a cringe.

Oh, and those thighs? Girl, I was ready to get a new pair, like yesterday. What was God thinking?

I hate the refection in the mirror. I hate me.

And so I stamp myself “not good enough”.

Thighs ~ NOT GOOD ENOUGH

Smile ~ NOT GOOD ENOUGH

Eyes ~ NOT GOOD ENOUGH

And the list goes on.

Life plods along, a daily battle of me vs. me.

And mothering? A whole heap of “I’m not good enough!” jumps on the pile. Crumbs, spilt milk, kids’ decisions, and my own indecision fly the banner high.

NOT GOOD ENOUGH.

Meanwhile perfection sits by and cracks a smile.

But one day Prince Charming swoops in, and in the blink of an eye, He whispers words that resonate. I hear their trumpet sounding deep within, although nary a sound hits the airwaves.

Love Yourself.

(Gasp!)

What? Is that You, God? Are you telling me to love myself?

The words sink in, but my lips remain in gasp formation. How could I walk this soil for 40+ years, never truly loving myself?

A verse in Matthew dances to life.

And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:39 NIV

A revelation hits.

God, if I don’t love myself, how can I truly love others?!

I gasp again, nervous at the thought.

Truth reveals a battleground. Not Good Enough is its name. Perfection is its game. And deception rides with a vengence.

What simply seems to be a battle with thighs is truly a war against evil.

Muster your gear, girl!

The view clears. The Holy Spirit offers eyes that see.

Works, not God, birthed the awful reflection. There was no grace, no mercy, no love of Jesus, just me bashing the magnificient creation of God – me.

I became my own worst enemy. Perfection and deception waged their war. But this was a new battle. After all, Jesus is Lord.

I stand at the mirror. The same eyes, mouth, and thighs await. I touch my face. This time I choose not to see what’s wrong, hateful, and simply not good enough. This time I do indeed see perfection – my Father’s perfection. It has nothing to do with me or my works. It’s all about my Creator.

That’s what a douse of Truth will do.

I see His magnificient handiwork all over me. And it’s good.

Psalm 139:14 forms on my lips, its words thread with my own in a triumpant overtone. I look at those eyes and the cadence of words begins to bring me into step with truth.

“I praise you, Lord, because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Oh God, Your works in me are wonderful. This I know full well.”

I repeat it again – each time I study the girl in the mirror. I bring truth with me and speak to the reflection, whether I feel perfect or not.

Deception, meanwhile, sits alone.

I no longer see me and my work. I see Jesus, all He has given, and love’s overflow pouring over me. My Creator’s work dances to life. And it is good.
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I share this today, knowing there are others in the heat of this same battle. I get you, my friend.

You’re not happy with the reflection in the mirror.

You feel like a failure as a woman or mother, hating the works, accomplishments, and view you see.

But consider the reflection a deflection of truth. Call it what it is: a lie.

Uncover the truth and you’ll see a wonderfully made woman: you.

Behold the magnificient work of our Creator: you.

It is good.

Grab Psalm 139:14. Use it as your sword, cutting through the nonsense darkness offers. Shed a little “Light” on the subject. I’ll be speaking truth into my mirror as well.

And feel free to grab this prayer:

Father, Your love is enough. Thank You for pouring Your love over me. Forgive me for believing lies, not You. Open my eyes to truth. Your work in me is wonderful. Help me know this full well. I believe You, Lord. Thank You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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Kristi Woods is a writer and speaker passionate about seeing women walk deeper with God. She clicks words of encouragement at http://www.KristiWoods.net regularly and is published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Dreams and Premonitions as well as on Proverbs 31 Encouragement for Today and on various blogs. Kristi, her retired-from-the-military husband, and their three children survived a nomadic, military lifestyle and have now set roots in Oklahoma. Connect with Kristi here: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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21 thoughts on “When I Look in the Mirror and Hate Myself {Anchored Souls Series}

  1. Yay, Kristi! Oh, that mirror can be brutal, as can rating our “performance” in our various roles. Not good enough, like any other lie, comes from bits of truth- it just dismisses the point. Not good enough wants to keep us distracted from what matters- how our Lord sees us and what He calls us! Your phrase here is going to stick with me: “It has nothing to do with me or my works. It’s all about my Creator.” AMEN. So blessed by your words today!

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  2. It’s a battle every single women and girl has, if we’re honest. We *have* to trade lies for God’s truth if we’re going to survive and walk out all that God has for us. Thank you for these words, Kristi!

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  3. What a fresh, insightful look at a familiar verse! I love that translation Kristi, and I love how you so beautifully made it come to life for me this morning. I needed to read this today. Thankful for your post this morning!

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  4. Such a beautiful reminder, Kristi … and needed … just last night before I went to bed, I was thinking about what life would be like (if only … a few things could magically change) … Yes … I am fearfully and wonderfully made … this has not been an issue for me until recently … I need to know this deep inside.

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  5. This is so good, Kristi! It is a daily battle to look in the mirror and see beauty instead of flaws. Thanks for reminding me that I am “wonderfully made!”

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  6. This is beautiful, Kristi: “But consider the reflection a deflection of truth. Call it what it is: a lie.
    Uncover the truth and you’ll see a wonderfully made woman: you.” Thanks for speaking truth over us. May we each do it ourselves when we look in the mirror.

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  7. Pour your love over me. Oh, friend. I’m echoing that prayer. Loved this: “I see Jesus, all He has given, and love’s overflow pouring over me. My Creator’s work dances to life. And it is good.”

    I never had much problem with who I saw in the mirror, until I hit about 47. 🙂 But praise God, I finally got used to the “gently aging me” and am learning to embrace my new identity. 50 year old moms can look kind of old, right? But I’ll still be beautiful with His love poured over me. You are too, Kristi.

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    • Interesting, Betsy, that your’s hit at 47 while mine was from jr high until my early 40’s. Yes, we are a beautiful set of gals. 😉 His word is clear: we’re fearfully and wonderfully made. Amen, sista!

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  8. Beautifully stated Kristi! I have struggled with my self image over half my life Kristi. I am learning to remind myself I am beautiful in God’s eyes. I am now aware of the hot buttons Satan tries to use to force those fears and doubts to the surface but God is faithful. I run towards Him and He reminds me who I am in Christ. Thank you for sharing this heartfelt post. I hope you have a fantastic weekend and a blessed holiday season!

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    • Horace, it’s interesting to me that you, as a man, struggled as well. All too often we only hear of the females. I’m thankful you left your thoughts here today, sharing your own struggle. I’m more thankful we have a God who helps us overcome. #goJesus! Merry Christmas, Horace!

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  9. Oh, I’ve stared at my reflection and stamped not good enough more times than I could count. But this: “bring truth with me” reminder is one my heart needs. To battle the lies, and see myself through His eyes. Thank you, Kristi, for sharing your heart.

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  10. Kristi, I think one of Satan’s biggest tricks is to skew our vision and keep us from seeing ourselves as God sees us, and even as our loved ones see us. I complain about how the bags under my eyes have bags right now, and my husband says he doesn’t even notice them. “Don’t talk about my wife that way,” he says. Maybe he’s just being nice, or maybe I’m not seeing myself accurately. You’re right … God is a magnificent Creator, and His work is always good–not to be disparaged! Thank you for this wonderful reminder to focus on God’s handiwork, not on my own (real or imagined) flaws. 🙂

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