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The Slums

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14 NIV

A while back we wanted to downsize. Everything. Our bodies, our home, our stuff. So we looked at some condos and townhomes in a gated community nearby.

There was one that had all the things we needed on the main floor (for when we can't get up and down stairs), and yet it had a couple of bedrooms up and a walkout basement. This could work we thought.

My hubby was talking with a friend who knew the area. He mentioned that we had found a place that could work. His friend said, "You know that area is considered the 'slum' of the neighborhood."

HUH? When he told me that, I was dumfounded! I said, “I don't get it! Everything in that neighborhood is nice. Why would anyone say that?”

Did you ever read the book You Are Special by Max Lucado to your kids? Max writes about how we put people into categories and then distribute love accordingly.

I will never forget many years ago, my girlfriend's sister sent me (along with hundreds of others) an email with a poem about ugly feet. It basically said, all girls with gnarly feet should not wear sandals and hurt the eyes of those around them.

I cried.

As long as I can remember, I've had a very large bunion on my right foot. That little email took up residence in the recesses of my brain and I never wore sandals again.

Then one day I read in Psalm 139 how I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I glanced down at my foot and asked, "Except that, right Lord?"

He whispered, "Read it again."

The Hebrew word for "wonderfully made" is "Pala" and it means "to separate, distinguish, do wonderful things." God does things beyond the bounds of human powers.

I replied, “Really? I am wonderfully made? You have made me to be separated and distinguished to do wonderful things beyond human powers so that others can see You in me?”


How sad that we classify God's beautiful creations as "gnarly" or "slums."

Let's start choosing to see others the way God sees them: fearfully & wonderfully made.


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