When Scriptures Say Things We Struggle to Believe

I will give thanks and praise to You,

For I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

Wonderful are Your works,

And my soul knows it very well.

Psalm 139:14 Amplified Version

I wonder if these verses make you shiver; if they are irritating to you; if you totally cannot relate to this perspective. I STILL struggle to believe that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I SAY that I know full well that God’s works are wonderful, but I struggle to believe that my own choices have not ruined the wonderful work that God “supposedly” did when he knit me together in my mother’s womb.

As part of my recovery I choose daily to practice believing things - including this - that are difficult for me to accept. I return to this passage trusting in something bigger than I can understand, acting on faith that this is true regardless of how I feel. As an act of discipline, I try to order my thoughts, my emotions, and my behavior in response to this belief, not my internal angst. Some days are better than others in this regard. We do not need a visit from Freud to understand that it took some doing to teach me that I was afraid and fearful but not wonderful. We are uniquely created to understand that we bear the image of God. This knowledge is forgotten, distorted, lost for most of us as we grow up in a world that prefers comparing and competing over cooperation and compassion.

What happens when we are assaulted with experiences that do not support our wonder-full origins? We survive. We study the world and give it what it demands from us. We create a personality that seeks to either fit in, fight or flee the world around us. This is survival of the fittest and our definition depends on what our environment requires of us. It is NORMAL for us to build a personality, a way of being in the world. It is INEVITABLE that, at some point in our lives, we will be shocked to discover that we are at war within ourselves, that our lives are unmanageable, and we need help. Transformation requires that we enter a period of reconstruction in response to the destruction that a broken world encourages.

Am I going to continue to rely on the messages my brain holds onto from its years of studying people on earth? Or am I going to make a decision to change my perspective because I believe in something bigger than me?