This post is very near to my heart. It is my sister’s own testimony of struggling with acne and how God showed her how beautiful she was regardless of what the mirror showed her. Please read and I pray her story inspires you to see past what’s skin deep.
Check out my sister’s blog, you’ll love her little family adventures!
“Growing up many people would compliment me on how beautiful and clear my skin was. They would often describe my face as porcelain, beautiful, and flawless. Looking in the mirror now, I don’t think I would be able to use those same words to illustrate how my skin appears. My journey through acne has taught me so many things, and I still am learning as I look back on my experience. I believe God took me through this path of dealing with my appearance to really uproot the main cause of my insecurity, which was finding approval in others. Here is my story of how God has redeemed me of the sin approval.
It was my junior year of high school and the first semester was what I thought was amazing. I had wonderful teachers, a balanced schedule, and not to mention I just got my first boyfriend. The start of my second semester was another story. My friendship with my best friend of four years starting drifting apart. I found myself changing, growing up, and realizing what I thought was important in my life, acceptance, beauty, and acknowledgment from others. After struggling with the situation, my friend and I both agreed we had grown up and no longer were the same people we use to be four years ago. Dealing with that obstacle in my life was not only emotional but physical. Since I was so stressed out I started to have breakouts on my face. This was really new to me because right up to this point I was blemish- free and proud of it. I quickly turned to what I thought would fix it all, a daily regimen of washing my face, moisturizing, and zapping any problem areas with special ointments.
When I noticed the break outs were getting worse and not going away, I started to feel insecure about myself. I would struggle with thoughts that consisted of; me not being pretty, how others might think I am ugly, and I might even lose friends. I felt my face was no longer beautiful but a nightmare that needed to be masked by makeup. I would spend countless minutes finding ways to disguise what I thought was a hideous face in my reflection. I prayed about my face, begging God to wipe it all away and give me back the face I once had. Every night I would begin to lay my burden at the foot of the cross, but every morning I took it up again as I looked at myself in the mirror. I was no longer able to love myself and was mad at the Potter for what He created.
My face cleared up a little, but I continued to struggle with acne till my junior year of college. I don’t even want to think about the amount of my parent’s money I used on dermatologist appointments and special medications to help me find the one thing that could fix it all. The summer after my sophomore year I believe I finally hit a breaking point. It led to finally realizing my problem could not be fixed just on my skin’s surface, but needed to be healed from the inside out. I realized the biggest struggle was my sole desire of approval of others to find my worth. I looked to others to tell me I was beautiful, valuable, and thought highly of. In all honesty, I never found that validation until I sought after my Creator. I began studying my Bible and I was blown away to find verses that specifically filled me up with true acceptance.
Psalm45:11: Let the king be enthralled by your beauty;
honor him, for he is your lord.
Psalm 139:14: I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
Song of Solomon 4:7: You are altogether beautiful, my darling;
there is no flaw in you.
Isaiah 43:4: you are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you
The summer of 2007 I was heading to T bar M to be a camp counselor, and help facilitate team building activities to high school dance teams. The exact same time I was going to be experiencing my worst break outs. Working with high school girls while dealing with acne was no piece of cake and I was struggling. I can recount a time when I was leading a small group discussion with a few girls, I asked them to share what one of their major fears were. One girl who made it a point to voice her negative attitude about participating in the challenge course responded,” My biggest fear is to get acne.” Her response really affected me even though she was 6 years younger than me. Little did I know the girl’s response would not just tear me down, but to my surprise, empower me. I finally asked the question to myself, “Why does it matter so much what others think about you, and does it really matter?” I could not respond to the question and I knew the lack of my answer meant that it truly didn’t matter.
I began praying not that my acne would disappear, but that God would heal the false idol that ruled my life, approval. God didn’t fix me overnight, it took a long journey that I sometimes struggle with today. After camp I began using acutane, which helped stop the break outs. I have been off of it for four years, but I still have scars that remind me daily how my value is found in Christ alone. My creator formed me and his masterpiece is flawless.”