I was thinking recently about one of Rev. Barbara Miner’s past sermons at Floris UMCthe one where she encouraged us to take a picture first thing in the morning before any attempts to beautify our appearance. Her point in this challenge was to remind us that we are already masterpieces in God’s eyes, so we don’t need to make ourselves look good in order to be worthy of his love. She encouraged us to embrace all of our imperfect perfection and try to love ourselves as we are, like God does.

I think we sometimes struggle with this in the same way that we struggle to stay connected with God. If only we could find that elusive 25th hour in the dayif only we could cross off that last item on our to do list and get everything just rightthen our decks would be clear and we would finally be ready to engage fully with God. But what if we didn’t wait until that perfect, accomplished moment to engage with God? How would our lives be different if we decided to just show up as we are?

I was working from home as usual one Monday afternoon, immersed in a few projects. Before I knew it, 4 p.m. became nearly 6 p.m.then 6:20 p.m.then 6:40 p.m. I felt myself racing against the clock to finish something that evening and also make it to my 7 p.m. small group on time. For a split second, I thought about skipping my group and pushing through my project to completion. It would feel so good to finish it! Besides, I wasn’t even dressed for church. I was still wearing my hair in a pony tail and still had on the yoga pants I’d put on hours earlier, back when the idea of going to yoga class before my small group was still in my plan for the day. By now you’re getting a picture of my Monday can I get an amen?

It would have been easy to just call it a day, stay home and vow to do better the following Monday. Instead, I put on sneakers (complete with very unfashionable green socks) and a jacket and sped off to church in time for small group. And you know what? Nobody cared what I wore. I left a little over an hour later feeling renewed and extremely grateful for the time spent in connection with God and my friends in faith.

I think God wants us to know that our incomplete to do lists and our yoga pants are just fine with him. He wants us to come as we are, especially when we are feeling pulled in multiple directions. I don’t know that you’ll ever see me in worship in my yoga pants (you’re welcome), but I feel confident that God would save a seat for me if I did. Why? Because I am God’s beloved. So are you! Whether we’re dressed in yoga pants or tuxedos, God remains especially fond of us.

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