Self-worth struggles and a Covenant of Life

When I was in the final stages of editing my book I came across this passage:

‘Black baggy clothes were my staple attire—my best efforts to hide the body I was ashamed of. In my mind, the few extra kilos I carried were enough to make me want to hide. But imagining the future forced me to realise I didn’t want to be a wife with body image issues, a lack of confidence, constantly belittling myself. God valued me, and I needed to start valuing myself.

Value is not something you can add externally. Value comes from within. It was a journey toward finding a healthy self-image and appreciating the way I had been created… I began feeling like the woman I imagined I’d be if I were married; confident inside and out.’

I felt confronted by the words on the page. My own words, first penned out of divine revelation ten years earlier, pinpointed the overwhelming insecurity that I was currently pushing under the covers… again.

I felt like a fraud.

I longed for the maturity that the writer (me ten years ago) seemed to possess. Where did it go? The revelation that once permeated every aspect of my life was a stark contrast to my norm these days. I had let it slip. In my present day, I found myself more challenged than ever with insecurity around my looks.

Writing a book led me to publishing a book. Publishing a book led me to marketing my book. And marketing led me to social media, which led me to photos. Photos of me posted often. More accurately it led me to long pauses in social media not wanting to post photos of me.

I was cornered.

Why? Why didn’t I want photos? What was wrong with me? Why did I not feel my image was good enough.?

I grieved. I grieved for the woman of God who knows better than to beat herself up and tear herself down. Surely my girls deserved a better role model. My head could recite the truth, but my heart was charting the course and there were huge gaps in my knowledge, believing and actions.

My actions revealed that I should be better, look better, and life would be better if I looked a different way.

I got angry.

Annoyed at the enemy and a little at myself for not fighting harder. A defiance rose up on the inside and I drew my line in the sand. The battle of self-worth had gone on too long and I allowing it to steal another minute. I was done with trying healthy habits and new practices. Instead, went to the foot of the cross and made a covenant.

In my devotions a few days earlier I’d read Deuteronomy 30:11-20

‘For this commandment that I command you today is not too hard for you, neither is it far off… But the word is very near you. It is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it…

I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore, choose life, that you and your offspring may live.’

I re-read the passage then wrote the headings in my journal:

‘LIFE (BLESSING)’ on one side and

‘DEATH (CURSING)’ on the other.

Under LIFE & BLESSING, I listed

Joy, love, value, hope, freedom, confidence, overcoming, feeling content, forgiveness, pride (in the good sense), feeling more than enough, justice.

And under DEATH (CURSING), listed:

Shame, hate, disgust, disappointment, belittling, hiding, escape, defeat, feeling less than, sorry, embarrassed, no good, undeserving, unfair, control.

Between the two lists, I wrote and circled the word CHOOSE.

And then, because I knew I’d struggled to choose consistently for many years, and because today was different, I took communion. I took a covenant of LIFE, choosing LIFE, choosing Jesus, His way and with HIS grace. I rested in the confidence of covenant: Him and me working together.

choosing life

It was simple and powerful.

There is something about recognising our failure in contrast to His strength. Remembering His sacrifice in these moments made the battle feel final. Done. Finished.

Amidst this decision to walk in freedom, I’m reminded that when you feel like you’re stepping out and doing what God is asking you to do (for me this is publishing Daughter Wait!) mostly it’s not about the outcome, the endpoint, or the ‘book’ in my case. But rather, it’s about where the journey takes you within. What it does within your heart, in coming closer to Jesus and reflecting His image more accurately.

How about you? What is it that He is calling you to do right now? And the better question, who is He calling you to become as you do it?

When was the last time you took communion and rested in Him instead of fighting your struggles?

Remember Him.

In love,

Carly Riordan

Carly Riordan Author

Carly lives on the Gold Coast, Australia with her husband Joe and their two girls: Beni and Selah. She is a passionate follower of Jesus Christ, a lover of His Church, His people, His Word and life in general.

Inspired by all aspects of creativity, creative people and the topic of worship, Carly is passionate about helping people to live a Spirit-led life and see them step confidently into all that God has created them for.

Daughter Wait Book

Daughter Wait!

Within these pages are my most vulnerable and heartbreaking moments, along with the powerful revelations and realisations that set my heart on a new course. It is a warning of the perils of dating and a reminder of the promises of a Godly relationship.

If you’ve ever wondered:

How do I have a Godly relationship?
How do I know if he is the one?
What are realistic boundaries in a Christian relationship?
How do I move on from a broken heart?

Then this book is for you.

Written in Carly’s unique conversational style, you’ll cry, laugh and cheer as you follow her story of love and loss. Daughter Wait is a timeless reminder that regardless of your past, God has the best for your future.

Daughter Wait! is an invitation to consider a different approach to dating and relationships.

Applications are open to join the launch team for Daughter Wait! 

Alternatively order your copy today here.

2 thoughts on “Self-worth struggles and a Covenant of Life

  1. Love this – I have also read diary excerpts or listened to songs I wrote 10 years ago & been blown away by a mature revelation I was walking out at that time & at the same time dumbfounded that I’ve come around to struggle with it again 🤦🏻‍♀️ Time to rise up again!

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