Have you ever held onto a picture you liked of yourself for “inspiration”? Do you still keep that pair of “skinny jeans” stuffed in your bottom drawer, hoping that you will be able to fit your way back into them in the coming century? Have you ever thought that maybe holding onto these items hinders you rather than helps you?
There is a reason you and I hold onto these things: we remember a time when we felt great and looked beautiful. The pair of jeans represents your glory days. The picture shows off you looking your best. The books represent something you want to be and what you can always go back to. Embodied in these items live our hopes and dreams. “If only I could look like this again,” you think to yourself, “then I will be beautiful.” So out come the skinny jeans, up goes the picture, and through your mind the words on the page travel. You live to become that perfect you, for perfection is what is beautiful today. And you believe you aren’t beautiful until you look like that once again.
Can I let you in on a little secret? Those things you hold onto are only hindering you. The moment you set them up on the pedestal and slap the label “Beautiful” on them is the moment you put on the chains. Sure, you took off the chains before. You reached that place of freedom. Then why do you still hold onto these things?
Holding onto your skinny jeans is not going to make you feel beautiful; it’s only going to make you feel fat. Reminiscing about the “glory days” when you were young and beautiful will never make you feel beautiful; it will only make you feel worthless. Keeping the books that “helped” you in your eating disorder will never lead you to the truth about beauty; it will only drag you down the moment you decide to open the pages again.
For that reason, today is my trash day. I have held onto things for way too long and it is time to get rid of them. Though I may not be using them, the act of keeping them is doing more harm than good. It means I’m holding onto what could be. It means I’m holding onto the past. It means I’m creating a place for destruction in my future. It means I’m not truly living the beautiful life.
So here is to true beauty. Here is to life without hindrances. Here is to the trash guys who might find an interesting read in this weeks garbage can.
Verse: “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” (Hebrews 12:1)