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(in)courage is a virtual living room where we build community, celebrate diversity, and become women of courage.

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  1. That is real, genuine, and beautiful. For many years of my life I shared your weight struggle. I believed that if I lost weight all of those feelings you described would go away, and life would be perfect. Nope. . . didn’t happen. Thank you for capturing in words the mental struggle, and giving us a path to new perspective.

    • Kim, thank you for sharing a bit of your story with us here. I’m grateful God could use this post to encourage you and remind you how much He loves you.

  2. Mary,
    When my husband and I got married, he said to me, “Do you know how many times you say ‘Sorry’?” I’m not saying that love means never having to say you’re sorry, but if we are perpetually apologizing for how we are, what we do and say, how we react then something is out of whack. God loves a humble and contrite heart, but when we continually put ourselves down, it’s not God-honoring. In fact, it’s pride in saying that God’s handiwork is not “good.” I wouldn’t tell God He did a lousy job with the mountains and oceans He created, so why should I tell Him He did a lousy job making me? Amen, Mary! We are fearfully and wonderfully made! May we keep our nose in the Bible so that we are constantly reminded of this truth.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

  3. This hits home. I have a condition called Neurofibromatosis. It causes fibromas, or lumps/bumps, to grow all over my body. It’s progressing to the point where I’m giving up things I love, because of others seeing and commenting. I want to be confident enough that I don’t let their stares and words hurt, but I am not. I want to be confident in my own skin, but I’m not. I want to be not sorry.

    • Hi there, Tracy. I’m so sorry you’re suffering from that condition and its side effects on your confidence. I’m praying God reminds you of your value and worth and just how much He loves you just the way you are today.

  4. Thank you Mary! I have heard many voice these exact concerns and you have shared it well and have encouraged deeply. I will be saving this for a future passing on to those that need a little pick-me-up. Sometimes others say it better than I can and this is that sometime. God bless your ministry through words and deeds, through experiences and life. Keep trusting our Gracious God as He leads and guides you along life’s journey.

  5. Mary, this devotion is like a hug from God. Yes, in many ways, in many moments I felt too [fill in the blank.] Too anxious, too needy, too driven, too awkward, too exhausted, too much. But we are never too much for God. Thank you, friend, for vulnerably sharing your heart so that others can know they’re not alone and together we can shake off the lies and cling to what’s true.

  6. Hi Mary,

    I relate to this so well. I’ve had the same struggle with weight, and all that goes with it, since I was a child. All the feelings, hurt,etc. Thanks for being so honest and open about this topic.

    Peace and Blessings to you!

  7. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Like you, I hated flying because I was overweight. I lost half of my body weight, and although I did feel an accomplishment and pride in how I looked, the feelings and shame from so many years of those thoughts is still driving me. Peace and blessings!

  8. This was just what I needed to read today. I am the quiet, socially awkward one who feels I never fit in. But thank God He loves me and us all just the way we are! Loved reading this.

  9. Mary, I’m Glad you share space with all of us in the world!
    I’m glad you are uniquely designed by God in Shape, fashion, form, and style.
    I.m glad you are a part of my world, my faith, and my sisterhood in Christ!
    I’m glad you bravely and eloquently put into words how tiring, overwhelming of an experience it is to try to effortlessly rush to the airports and navigate through the terminal with purse and carry on luggage to the gates and bulky over packed luggage bags.
    I’m glad you realize you’ve mastered how to use the overhead panel I always fumbled with that.
    I’m glad you have such high regard for personal space when the airlines pack passengers on the flight like sardines in a can on overpriced flights (and feed us the sample sized bag of peanuts and ever- shrinking miniature cans of soda)
    I’m glad you put into words what I have always felt about the seats on a flight (they would have seats on the ceiling if it were aerodynamically possible (I bet someone is designing that as we speak; Probably the Army corps of Engineers as if they don’t have enough to handle right now.)
    I’m glad you are a Waymaker for Christ.
    I would love to sit beside you in my church someday, YOU WILL ALWAYS BE WELCOMED THERE WITH OPEN ARMS (I’m serious, our greeters welcome you literally with outstretched arms and a huge hug!)
    I am so glad that you are brave and caring to share and put into words what so many of us have often felt.
    Thank you, Jesus for helping us see the beauty in others even when we fail to see the beauty in ourselves!
    Mary, YOU ARE LOVED AND CHERISHED!

  10. This sounds a lot like me. I don’t want anyone else to go about their day feeling this way. It puts a sad and sick feeling in one’s stomach. You don’t breathe so well and you think you are causing others to be uncomfortable but really it’s not true. Only you are uncomfortable because someone in the past said something or acted in an ugly behavior toward you. It could have happened during your childhood, in high school or in college. It maybe happening right now, in your grownup times.

    Please don’t go to bed tonight without knowing that we are God’s children, His workmanship for good things.

    Change your opinions of others and your opinions of yourself. Be brave, start over with a new way to look at yourself and a new way to look at others. God is the Creator, we are the created. Allow God to complete within us His desired purpose and plans for our lives.

  11. Mary thank you for writing this devotional I always feel like I’m too much too big too opinionated too conversational just too much. And I compare myself with other people who don’t respond like I do so this devotional is confirmation that God purposely made me for who I am as scripture tells me so.

  12. Mary,

    I’ve often felt the opposite-“not enough”. Not smart, good looking, capable, etc. It has taken many years to over come those thoughts. Still every now & then they come back. Like you & Bev pointed out we are plenty enough. God made us fearfully & wonderfully in His image. If we say anything about ourselves we are saying the same thing is true of God. Lately God has been showing me that I am more than enough for Him to accomplish His works through me. He has given me a part time job in ICU Step down at a large hospital. I deal with RNs, CNAs, patients, families & doctors helping them accomplish their goals of getting patient well again. Never did I ever see myself in that kind of role. God sure did. He knew I was suited for that type of work. Let’s celebrate the wonderful us that God created us to be. Quit apologizing for any flaws we may have.

    Blessings 🙂

  13. Thank you for this post. This year I started to embrace all of me, even the parts I consider awkward or not enough as “fearfully and wonderfully made”. So I especially love this – “when God looks at His creation (that’s you! and me!), He says, “It is very good.” I need to remind myself of this everyday.

  14. I see this, too, in how I feel about entering a conversation. Thank you for sharing this idea in your post! I feel we all have some of these feelings to overcome. I pray we all can overcome this through Christ’s grace and atonement!