Beautiful Words in an Ugly Place

Meet what could arguably be the Ugliest Chair in America. It usually has a nice cover on it, which I took off to clean. But what my chair lacks in style and beauty it makes up for in practicality. Its dimensions suit me, and I've spent 15 years reading and praying in this comfortable, ancient, undeniably ugly chair.

After removing the cover I decided to move the chair, so I could vacuum up what turned out to be a small garden plot beneath it.

That’s when I saw it. Nearly invisible beneath about 4 inches of dusty crud, laid a 3x5 index card. I hesitated to pick it up because of the filth, but I leaned down, pinched it with the very tips of two fingers and shook the gook off. It read:

Fear not, Julie. I am your shield, your abundant compensation, and your reward shall be exceedingly great. (Genesis 15:1b, my name added)

That a beautiful, completely forgotten scripture rose out of the dirt to speak to me touched me to tears.

And it made me think. The same God who created dust and then used it to form us, speaks to us in the middle of our mess. When we least expect it. And when we most need it.

Sometimes ugly erupts out of me faster than I care to admit. Like when I'm driving and groaning after being cut off by a thoughtless driver. That's where God likes to meet me--right smack dab in the middle of ugly. He gently nudges me and helps me to change my bad attitude. What I love the most about Jesus is that He gets right down there with us, gently lifts us out of the gunk, and cover our ugliness with His fresh, clean beauty.

Perhaps you’re in an ugly place right now. Maybe you’re ankle deep in some crud and could use a fresh, encouraging word from the God who adores you. Maybe, just maybe, this verse is for you:

You are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you.

Do not be afraid, for I am with you. - Isaiah 43:45

My prayer for you this week is that you receive exactly what you need from the only One who truly meet that need--the One who speaks to our hearts even when they have ick in them.

Because in our ugliest moments, He gives us beautiful words.


22 comments:

Diane said...

A Word just when you needed it. How wonderful God is!!! :O)

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

God is just so cool . . .

Fondly,
Glenda

Jeanette Levellie said...

I think God did this for me, too!!! Thanks for cleaning under that ugly chair, honey. I love you.

Jen

Karen said...

Julie, I like that! Say, wonder what I would find in the balls of white dog hair under my couch? Oh great, now I've got to go look!

Farm Girl said...

Thank you for visiting this morning. Well, I love your chair! I have been in so many places in the last two years looking for a chair like that. :) It looks like the perfect prayer chair. I really like the buried treasure you found underneath that chair. That was so neat and I love that God does that sometimes. So glad you wrote about it.
How special,

Farm Girl said...

Thank you for visiting this morning. Well, I love your chair! I have been in so many places in the last two years looking for a chair like that. :) It looks like the perfect prayer chair. I really like the buried treasure you found underneath that chair. That was so neat and I love that God does that sometimes. So glad you wrote about it.
How special,

Terri Tiffany said...

I don't think your chair is ugly at all! Thank you Julie for always ministering to me with your posts. I am in an ugly place today and reading this was God reaching out with such a reminder:) Blessings!

VintageBookLove said...

Wow, I really needed to hear that right now - thank you for sharing!

~*~KIMBERLY~*~ said...

Wow... how awesome is that. I love how God does that... Praise HIM!

Michele Katherine said...

What a beautiful moment, finding that treasure hidden beneath the chair. Our Savior cares about us, and lifts us up when we don't expect it. He's a God of surprises, and thank you for sharing. He is so worthy to be lifted-up.

It's funny just when I think I have reached a new level in my faith, and growth I have one of those "No so pretty attitudes", and it's like He's holding a mirror in front of me so I can see just how my behavior looks to those around me, and that it does not glorify Him in anyway. I can't get away with anything :o) Thank you Jesus!!

God bless you, and great post!!

Rachel said...

That is so awesome! I'm constantly amazed at how God knows what I need, when I need it---even when I have no clue! I'm so grateful he speaks into our lives!

gospelchick said...

Wow. An amazing post. Thank you. I hope you don't mind if I follow.

B His Girl said...

This post makes me want to vacuum! He gave you a treasured word in your meeting place. His words are true and beautiful. Savor them. B

Cheryl Barker said...

So thankful He speaks to us in the middle of our mess, especially since I can get into a mess on a fairly regular basis! So thankful for His unfailing love...

ginny said...

Your chair is not ugly. I have worse.
What a great surprise the Lord had in store for you and a reminder to me too! See, you minister to others amid the dirt.

curtissannmatlock said...

Oh, beautifully said. Thank you. God is wonderful, showing up even before we call.

I find notes I've made all over the place, and always when I need to read them.

Wendy Paine Miller said...

Julie, This is so cool! I usually find goldfish under our ugly chair.

Love those verses and love that God uses the weak and ugly to pass on His message.
~ Wendy

MelissaTaylor.org said...

I love this! What an awesome gift to find all covered up under that chair. Just proves God wraps our gifts in the most unlikely places!

And for the record, I don't think your chair is ugleY

Rachel B said...

God is so good! I love how he meets us in the midst of our "uglies"! Thanks for sharing this, Julie. You are a blessing!!

Erin MacPherson said...

This is such a wonderful story... I'm so glad you found the card and the message was so wonderful.

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Oh mercy, Julie,
my ugly place is in a cancer ward, waiting for my husband to have his radiation and chemo treatments. It has been thus since early Dec and we're at the end of treatments but not at the end of doc appointments. This week has been horrid and the emotional toil has been horrendous.
God has gotten us through, yet another week, in spite of me getting in His way. Bless His name forever!

Tracey Beers said...

Hey, you posted a new picture! I like it :)

Thanks for your always wonderfully penned thoughts. I look forward to reading every week.

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