Why Your Brand of Unique is Perfect

Why Your Brand of Unique is Perfect

June 30, 2017

“Sixty queens there may be, and eighty concubines, and virgins beyond number; but my dove, my perfect one, is unique …” Song of Solomon 6:8-9a (NIV)

Devotion Graphic

I look back at photos of my teenage self with a smile and a shake of my head.

My favorite look was funky. There are pictures of me in costume with a T-shirt held together with safety pins and hair faux-hawked to perfection. Other shots show my penchant for shoes in the colors of the rainbow and a prom dress carefully chosen not to be like anyone else’s. Without shame or fear, I chose what I liked, and I didn’t care if anyone else saw it as a fashion statement or a fiasco. My clothes were a reflection of how I felt about myself — confident and carefree.

When we girls grow into women, however, sometimes we lose confidence and find comparison. Later in my life, there was a phase when I only wanted to be the version of myself that was widely accepted — what everybody else was buying into. I concentrated on blending in, because that seemed like the best way to fit in. I wanted to be the size of other women, to dress like other women, to act like other women. I tried and tried to be just like everyone else, when I’m actually like no one else.

And neither are you!

God is the Creator who made us to enjoy variety, because He loves multiplicity and uniqueness.

Think of this … a utilitarian god would have created just one organism to pollinate flowers. Even though only one is technically needed, our creative, diversity-loving God created over 10 types of organisms including bees, hummingbirds, butterflies and even bats to do the pollinating. Within that group, there are more than 17,000 species of butterflies encompassing every imaginable color, size and shape.

And God was just getting started with the butterflies. When you’re in a crowd today, appreciate the wild beauty of the women around you — straight hair and curly hair. Ebony, mocha, ruddy and ivory skin tones, with every hue between. Wide noses, thin noses and noses turned up at the end like mine. No face or body is the same, because God doesn’t make duplicates.

God created diversity, and He loves diversity. Uniqueness delights our God!

When King Solomon spoke to his love in Scripture, he praised her for being unique in a way that surpassed even queens. Scholars say that these words were written to be a picture of how Jesus, the lover of our soul, sees us individually. Do you hear Him saying to you, “My dove, (fill in your name here), my perfect one is unique …”? (Song of Solomon 6:9a)

I’m not a mass-produced woman, my friend, and neither are you. God labored in hand-crafting each of us, one by one. Perfection as defined by God means that we’re unique. We’re at our closest to perfect when we’re living most fully as the one-of-a-kind woman God made, not when we’re conforming into the sameness the world around us wants to prescribe.

The things that make you different are what make you beautiful. Is it your humor? The gentleness of your spirit? The kindness of your heart? Is it your taste for funky clothes or the way you connect instantly with children? Is it your analytical brain or the music that flows from your fingers? Whatever your special blend is, embrace it.

Let’s live as our most perfectly unique version today. Let’s be our rare, beautiful selves, allowing our creative God to shine His glory through us.

Lord, so often I try to blend in instead of shining out the uniqueness You created in me. Help me keep my eyes focused on You, committing to be the exact version of me You created me to be. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Psalm 139:13-14, “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous — how well I know it.” (NIV)

RELATED RESOURCES:
In Amy Carroll’s book Breaking Up with Perfect, she describes her journey to something better than “perfect.” Instead of pursuing perfection, she shares lessons that lead us to deep, rich relationships, including a relationship with ourselves that values the woman we’re created to be.

CONNECT:
Visit Amy’s blog today to receive a free resource called “Five Days to Him-Perfection,” and start rejoicing in God’s perfect version of you!

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
In what ways have you tried to blend in and be the same as others around you? In what ways has God made you unique?

What is one way you can express your truest self today that brings glory to God and blesses others?

© 2017 by Amy Carroll. All rights reserved.

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Comments

  1. This is very true. We should be what God made us to be, and not to imitate others. Thank you Amy for the message. God bless you and your family.

  2. Father , please give me and these other sisters the eyes to see ourselves as you do–fearfully, wonderfully and uniquely made. Help us to be honest yet gracious with ourselves. Thank you.

  3. Thank you, Amy, for this devotion. As a senior citizen ,I am just now learning to be me. So many years wasted in trying to fit in, but it never worked. So much time, effort and money spent trying to be someone special. Little did I realize, I already was special, one of a kind. Now living and loving my life and who I am. I am God’s child. He loves me just the way I am, flaws and all !!I don’t need to prove to anybody that I am special in God’s eyes, because feeling it in my heart is enough for me.

    • Amy Carroll says:

      Shari, thank you for sharing your story so vulnerably. I’m thankful we serve a never-too-late God and that you have learned to live in His delight in you. I struggled way too long with perfectionism, and now I’m on a mission to help women to freedom much sooner than I experienced it. I’m praying that God uses you to help women younger than you to see themselves through God’s eyes!

  4. I tend to look in the mirror and take credit for what I like about myself and blame God for what I don’t like. Thank you, Amy, for this reminder that God doesn’t do the same thing–he doesn’t look with a critical eye that takes all the credit for what is good and blames us for what is off. He looks at each of us with the Creator’s proud and loving eye.

    • Amy Carroll says:

      Sweet Shirlee, I always love to read your comments and see how you minister to other women here. Thank you for the way you live in God’s love and spread it!

    • I do the same! I just didn’t realize it! Thank you Shirlee for this eye opener!
      Powerful words.
      Turning 58 years young…July 4th…thanking God I have had these 58 years! Proper perspective.

  5. Thank you so much Amy for this beautiful reminder. I thoroughly enjoy your devotions. I have your book, Breaking Up with Perfect as I struggle with being a perfectionist. I added my name in the Solomon 6:9 scripture as you suggested and never noticed this scripture before. What is so bazaar is I used to label myself as “weird” however several years while at work, I gave myself a title as VUI….”Very Unique Individual” and low and behold this scripture says “unique”. You also nailed it by saying….”Perfection as defined by God means that we’re unique. We’re at our closest to perfect when we’re living most fully as the one-of-a-kind woman God made, not when we’re conforming into the sameness the world around us wants to prescribe.” ……..AMEN ~Lisa~

  6. Elizabeth says:

    Very important to me. This is a great devotion! Thank you!

  7. I am feeling so defeated today. Thank you for this post. It was beautiful and unique.

    • Brenda M says:

      I too am feeling very low. This site and women such as yourself remind me that I am not defeated and definitely not alone. Unique but never alone.

  8. Juanita says:

    Your piece was a lovely and important message for women of all ages. I plan to have my daughter read it too. She is just entering a big “finding comparison” phase–the teenage years. And for me, it’s a good reminder that there really is no “prime” of your life. With focus fixed on God and enthusiasm and commitment to using your God-given qualities and talents, you can “shine out the uniqueness” at any age.

  9. Thank you Amy! The comparison game is a bad one! I need to remember to focus on that wonderful thing God did when he made variety!

  10. Your words this morning resonated with me and tears flowed unexpectidly. I have always been critical of my “uniqueness “. My husband how ever, has always loved it and seen the potential in it. Funny how we view things differently. “I am fearfully and wonderfully made”… was the verse I always used to encourage my son when he was young, yet I sometimes do not embrass it myself.

    Thank you Amy for allowing the Lord to use YOUR uniqueness this morning to encourage us. Words can’t express how it has impacted me today!

    • Amy Carroll says:

      You are a blessed woman to have a husband who sees the beauty of your uniqueness. Thanks for sharing, Karen!

  11. Amy
    Your God centered devotion today made me sit up and realize just how important and purposeful our uniqueness is. I wish that every person, especially ALL preteens and children for a matter of fact ,could read this devotion.
    So many of our society no matter what gender are lost and confused when it comes to uniqueness and self worth.
    Thank you a million times over for this eye opening devotion. GOD BLESS ALL OF US.

  12. Well, growing up I did always want to fit in, but never did. Not pretty enough, didn’t socialize enough, not rich enough, not stylish enough so I was forced to be myself. Even as an adult I have felt on the out skirts and find myself watching others be each of those and enjoying where I am.

  13. I was thinking if I saw everyone as perfectly created by God how much more I would or could love them. Instead of looking at them how I see them look at God how he sees them. perfectly created for his glory just like the butterflies and bees. All with purpose.

  14. This was a perfect devotion for me today! My sister recently said something that hurt about my personality. She probably didn’t mean to hurt my feelings but, well, she did. But after reading this devotion I am okay with what she said. I am a very direct person, I say what is on my mind and I don’t sugar coat it or soften my voice or anything else. I just say it like it is. I’m not mean, I’m just straight forward. My sister would say I have no tact! I know that isn’t always good and there are times when I slow down and chose my words a little better but this devotion helped me realize that this is how God made me. To be outspoken, and honest, with people. Thank you for this devotion today, it was very beneficial 🙏🏻💜 😊

  15. Debby Crawford says:

    I have always been different in a good way of course. But I have found myself lately in a new job not fitting in very well. I’m a little farm girl surrounded by uppity rich folks who think nothing of spending a fortune on their clothes. So todays devotion really blessed me. It’s okay to be different. In fact Jesus our Lord was different. He didn’t fit into the worlds mold either. So I guess we are in good company. Thank you for all you do for us women. God Bless you

  16. I just started this week reading these devotionals. Wow, Amy, this really hit home for me. I often struggle with identity, feeling like the runt…the one who isn’t like everyone else. In reading through God’s Word, I find I’m not alone in this. The very small nation of Israel thought themselves the runt while wanting to be like every other nation instead of just belonging to God. Gideon felt himself the runt when God asked him to save Israel out of the enemy’s hand, but God used him in a magnificent way. I see my own limitations, yet fail to see all God created me to be, embracing my uniqueness! These devotions are a true blessing!!!

  17. This is probably the greatest challenge I face in my faith because I do not like myself or who I am even though intellectually I know God made me who I am. But years of hearing otherwise have left a mark that has yet to heal.

  18. I love when you said I am not a mass-produced woman!!!!! That will stick with me for life!! Thank you for such inspiring read!

  19. Susan G. says:

    Love this!
    This is the best description of how God has created us “uniquely” and how we should embrace every bit of it!
    Thanks for this!

  20. Traci L. says:

    For so many years I wanted to be like women I have met and in life, even at church. They look so put together, perfect marriages, kids, homes..me I have 3 kids, 3 different dads, went through a divorce, got remarried, husband has PTSD and is an alcoholic, so many things that really took a hit on my self-confidence and self-esteem. Its hard not to feel like a failure or not good enough. I even had a church tell me that I wasn’t good enough because of my past to help with their youth group, that I was not role model material. I was devastated. I left church, left God for a bit, it wasn’t till I went searching on Facebook that I found the world of Online Bible Study and found Proverbs 31. I also found a couple others that when they heard my story and heard my issues I wasn’t good enough to be in them either and the one blocked me on Facebook. All my life I have lived with rejections and being told I am not good enough, I am a failure, and the more I hear it the more I go through, the more I believe it. It wasn’t till I read Lysa Terkurst’s book Uninvited that God so spoke to me. I don’t have to be like all those other people. I am me. I make mistakes and blunders and yep I have been through cancer and repossession and divorce and homelessness and I have survived. Despite what other people have said to me, done to me, I am a daughter of the King. This devotion put it all into perspective..I am ME! Someday maybe I can return to a church and be accepted and loved.

    • Amy Carroll says:

      Traci, I’m so sorry you were hurt by a church. I’ve been there, and it’s painful. I know there’s a church out there that will embrace the real you, though. I’m praying for God to lead you to that haven of support and love.

    • Karen S. says:

      Traci L., I would like to recommend a book to you, Captivating, Unveiling The Mystery of a Woman’s Soul. I’m so sorry for what you have gone through. My heart hurts for you. Please read this book. It speaks in the most deepest and intimate way of God’s love for women, His daughters. believe me, God will speak to your heart. This book reveals the heart of God in a way I’ve never heard before. He wants to heal your broken past, even from when you were a little girl. He wants to heal and mend your broken heart but most of all He just wants to love you.

    • Oh, Traci, how the church shoots their wounded! Many of us have been through church rejection and even shunning! Look at this as good news, because the Lord will lead you to a healthy church who centers on Him! I was reading in John 14 this morning about how heartbroken and dejected the disciples were after learning that Jesus would die, one of them was a traitor, Peter would disown Him not once, but 3 times, Satan would sift them as wheat, and they would all run and fall away at His arrest. But Jesus said to trust Him! They belonged to Him! Nothing could separate them from Him…not even their own sinful behavior! And, He restored them! You are His, Traci, and He is restoring you! Do not let your heart be troubled by people’s words. You are precious to Him. He chose you! Your children have a mother who loves them deeply and loves the Lord passionately! You are loved!

  21. So let me get this straight 60 queens 80 concubines n unlimited virgins makes women what? Feels like girls are not of value to me only tool for men to find pleasure n worth in equating it to god’s love. Well, what about the females that are to be of equal value? Yes, we are all unique n valuable but sounds like girls are less. Just saying. God had his favorites n so do people. I understand that’s life

    • B, please keep in mind that all scripture must also be understood in context. In Song of Solomon, the writer is talking about how precious his true love is, much like God loves us deeply. God’s favorite is each and every one of us. Please don’t let the historical piece of the scripture distract you from the larger truth–you are unique and precious and created with love by a perfect God who makes NO mistakes. God bless you.

  22. Karen S. says:

    Traci L., I would like to recommend a book to you, Captivating, Unveiling The Mystery of a Woman’s Soul. I’m so sorry for what you have gone through. My heart hurts for you. Please read this book. It speaks in the most deepest and intimate way of God’s love for women, His daughters. believe me, God will speak to your heart. This book reveals the heart of God in a way I’ve never heard before. He wants to heal your broken past, even from when you were a little girl. He wants to heal and mend your broken heart but most of all He just wants to love you.

  23. Janice Alston says:

    Great article,si inspiring. This is ture, I was guilty of wanting to be like others. But, i find myself loving who I am. I find that I feel confidence in who I have become. I feel I carry my beauty within. God has made me who I am, and I am Blessed. Thanks for such inspiring worxs.

  24. Thank you for posting this! I so needed this reminder. For most of my life I’ve been trying to suppress and get rid of who I really am because so many times in the past, when I was myself, I was rejected, over and over again. And now God, my therapist, and I are tackling the difficult task of breaking down all those walls around my soul and the very core of my personality. It’s hard, and it hurts a lot, and it seems like I’ll never be whole and open again, but I have to trust that, like with a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, it will be beautiful in the end. Thank you for posting this!

    (Also, the verses from Psalm 139:13-14 at the end of this devotion are in the NLT, not the NIV 😉 )

    • Amy Carroll says:

      It sounds like you’re the road to healing, Sarah. Praying for you right now and so proud of you that you’re doing the hard work!

  25. I really needed this reminder! I’ve gotten angry at God for the mistakes He’s created in me because I can list ten things that make me ugly, and that’s just from the neck up!! At 68, the unwelcome force of gravity is taking over and is adding to the unsightliness that is me. I’ve taken this devotion to heart because I so easily forget that I am a Daughter of the King. God is good and His ability to make each of us unique and beautiful in our own way Is boundless. I see other women as being beautiful. Now I need to see myself the same way!

    • Amy Carroll says:

      Pat, I wish I could look into your eyes right now and tell you how beautiful you are. I don’t need to see you to know that it’s absolutely true. Our God only makes beauty, and He made you. No more looking in the mirror and labeling yourself ugly or unsightly, ok? Write down the key verse, tape it on the mirror, and speak truth to your beautiful self. I’m praying that you see yourself through God’s eyes!

  26. It’s not just okay, but imperative that I am comfortable in my own skin. For me, Songs of Solomon will never be same again . Every verse is affirmation from my Lover and Lord!!! Thanks for sharing.

  27. How it grieves the heart of God when we compare ourselves to others. “I am wonderfully and fearfully made,” are the words I keep at the forefront of my thought closet. This is a battle for so many women. More so a battle for young girls who are constantly fed images through social media sites. This is something that is impacting their emotional health. When I was a teen, we did not have social media and I truly believe this is a ploy used by the enemy to distract us and keep us bound by thoughts that we are less than perfect. A place where we will be ineffective. We must take a stand! We must continually renew our minds with truth and not conform. I pray that we will all be aware of how this tactic can steal our purpose.

    Thank you for this devotion!

    • No, we didn’t have the internet but we DID have teen and women’s magazines and tv talk shows and articles and newspapers that did the same tearing women and girls down. It’s just that today it’s more forceful and all at once because the internet is so vast and full of opinion.

  28. Jacqueline says:

    Thank you for this encouragement. I too once lived a life free from worry about what others thought. Slowly over time and under pressure, I’ve found myself trying to appease others rather than be who God has called me to be. This is a daily battle. I pray as women of God, we will fight, with all the armor we’ve been given, to live free, to live loved.

    • Hello Jacqueline,

      Yes, this is my prayer as well. It is a fight, but a good fight. I once lived very concerned about what others thought and through a very hard time in my life which led me to counseling, I realized I was codependent. I still feel it at times, but I am aware now. God will set you free! For me, it was about misplaced priorities and not giving God the right place in my life. This led me to bad places. However, now I have this whole new life and have learned about setting boundaries with others.

  29. Thank-you, Lord for molding me into the person you wanted me to be. Strong, beautiful, loving,caring,needed. Healing hands, warm heart, loving eye, sweet smile, child of the most high. All of this and some more. AMEN
    I look like my mother and my father, some say my sister looks like me. Thank-you, Lord for molding me.

  30. This blessed me SO much. When I read, “Jesus, lover of my soul”, it touched me so deeply.
    This gave me more confidence to be myself. There are times that I shrink because even my own family smirks at my behavior sometimes, when I’m only reaching out to comfort or encourage someone else. My husband supports me but my daughter and granddaughter sometimes say, “What are you doing?” I am being my unique self. There was a young lady, maybe 13, who sang the National Anthem at a sporting event. She was behind me on a raised platform. She was so nervous, I could hear her having difficulty breathing. She finally began to sing and it was beautiful but she paid a price with her nervousness. When she finished, the crowd was very supportive and since she was so near to me, I and a few others approached her to compliment and encourage her. She was crying in her mother’s arms. She really did do a great job! My granddaughter said, “What are you doing?” , like I did something wrong. This isn’t the first time this has happened to me. My youngest daughter has told me, “Mom, you can’t do that.” I want them to think well of me, but I know in my heart that the things I have done have been loving and encouraging. I am saddened that they do not see into my heart. But God has given me this heart and I will continue to be me. Thank you for this post.

  31. Susan Allen says:

    56 years old with major depressive disorder. So I am gaining weight and don’t want to do anythig with my skinny friends. I. can’t be me , for I am the stupid one. Things That I think are funny no one gets and I wonder if it is sinful. I can’t stand this self. Righteous town.Is that bad?I’m inrelapse

  32. Sometimes the self that we think we are is not what God created us to be. We should rejoice in who God has created us to be and not rejoice in the idol we think we are to be or what we want to be. There is a difference.

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