At church this past Sunday, the pastor asked us about the voices we were listening to when it comes to what we believe about ourselves. It got me thinking that it would be interesting and probably helpful/healing to see the list written out. This is completely transparent, awkward to share and I know some would immediately say, “No way! You’re awesome! You’re beautiful!” However, I’ve heard it before. But I know me and the thoughts that I have, the opinion of who I am is louder. It’s not that I’m ungrateful for the compliments and encouragement. It’s just that if I place my worth in those opinions, then what about the other opinionated people who think the opposite? Which person/voice should I be listening to in finding my value?

I don’t trust people very easily. The trust I have when people share “truth” about me is completely non-existent with strangers, doubtful with casual friends, falters with close friends, semi-existent with family and not nearly as strong as I want it to be with, Jase, the closest earthly person to me. These “voices” are in my head, which I trust over every other person, most of the time.

Some days, I feel the entire list on my shoulders. Some days, I only feel part of this list. Sometimes it’s whispered. Sometimes it’s screaming.

1. I’m ugly.

2. I’m weak.

3. My skin isn’t flawless.

4. I’m a failure.

5. I don’t exercise enough.

6. Without a college degree, I’m not valued, my opinions don’t matter.

7. My stomach isn’t flat enough.

8. I’ve got ugly stretch marks.

9. My chest is too small.

10. My stomach is flabby.

11. I don’t look good without make-up.

12. I’m not a good mom.

13. I’m not a good wife.

14. No one should like me.

15. I don’t deserve a loving husband.

16. My hands are ugly.

17. The veins behind my ears are hideous.

18. My nose isn’t shaped right.

19. My hair is ugly.

20. I weigh too much.

21. My chin is crooked.

22. My toes are ugly.

23. My eyebrows aren’t full enough.

24. No one cares about my opinion.

25. I’m alone.

26. I have no worth.

27. I’m too old.

28. I should be making money.

29. I’m used goods.

30. My past is what defines me.

31. I am not unique/original. I am a copy.

32. I’m not loving enough.

33. I am being used.

34. I am being talked about.

35. My singing is worthless.

36. My future will be short.

37. I will be victimized again.

38. My children will be victimized.

39. My husband doesn’t love me.

40. I’ve got nothing to offer.

MOST OF THE TIME, I tell this list to go to hell, from whence it came. Sometimes, I let this list linger on my mind, for too long.

Although, EVERY time this list comes to mind, I eventually end up clinging to the fact that I am loved. That I am unconditionally loved. No strings attached, I am loved for who I am, who I was and who I will be. Regardless of what I look like, what I do, don’t do: I am loved just as I am.

That voice is the sweetest of them all.