Monday, May 13, 2013

The Frame

The wedding rehearsal heightened the anticipation in my heart. I have looked forward to this wedding with childlike glee. It began speaking to me right when the “save that date” card came in the mail.

Was it because I was invited? I don’t get invited to all the church family weddings my friends get to go to. Was this alone-on-the-playground girl, feeling the rush of being included?

Maybe it was because I knew the back story. The groom had walked some dangerous difficult roads in his rebellion a handful of years back. Then, he turned, and God took him firmly in his grasp. The prayers of a mother were heard and quickly responded to by grace alone. But, oh the prize. A beautiful bride to share his Christ-filled life with, who was eager to step in and bring nurture to his daughters. God’s restored favor is always the theme that stirs me most in a well told story and this story couldn’t be told any better than this.

Perhaps it was what the wedding coordinator pronounced to the wedding party as they were purposefully arranged around the bride and groom that late afternoon. “I heard it once said, in a wedding, the bride is the picture, the groom the frame and all the rest of you, you are just the wall paper.” And these words wandered through the deep paths of my heart on those busy days leading up to the wedding. I considered the picture we were looking at. The bride. She was strikingly beautiful, yet not consumed with it. It was her heart that she allowed to captivate people, because she was kind and mindful of others. And all these things I had known from the start.

Yet, there was more. And I saw that “more” when she was in the arms of her fiancĂ©e. Clicking through the many photos on facebook I finally saw it: the look in her eye, the poise in her back as she stood. I was stirred most deeply by the confidence that she had in her beauty while she was resting in the secure arms of her lover.

Confidence in beauty. That does not come natural to me. As a reformed tom boy and a woman with issues, confidence in the one thing that outwardly defines me as woman, does not come naturally. I have to work hard. I do not wear it well. And the discomfort at times can be agonizing.

So it is not easy to hear the Lord speak to me about these things. I wince at his words and dodge his gentle touch. At times I even turn my back and just want to cry, “Don’t touch me,” when he tenderly reaches out.

But it is in a painful moment like this that he gives me understanding. The picture of beauty is confidence, when framed in the right context. And he asks me, “How have you framed your beauty? Have you set it in the middle of all of your insecurities and then stepped back to look?” Or, another question, this time harder. “Have you used abuse to give the framework for how you see your beauty?” That border is cruel and unforgiving. Finally, “Have you found yourself not even worthy to be framed, but instead just rolled and cast to the side. Has the lack of voices in your childhood that should have breathed life into your understanding of the beauty within caused you to live in permanent ‘fade’ as you have no context in which to hang your beauty?” Yes, Lord, yes, and yes…

“I want to frame you,” he says, “in my love. My arms long to frame you in a solid embrace around your heart. I will breathe life to the beauty I placed in you. I will call it forth. I will highlight its subtle nuances. I will bring it to fullness through my song. My delight will illuminate your beauty, causing light to grow and shine forth. In that, you will begin to know what confidence feels like. Let me frame you, Beloved, in my love.”

So, I say, again, yes. I will let him crush and throw out the frames I’ve turned to that were not from him. I will let him pick me up and brush me off. I will let him stretch me and position me. I will let him hold me firmly and take hold of all the edges of me.

And I will let him frame me in his love.

(If you found this interesting, see part 2 at to see how God messed me up the whole day about this post!)

Today I’m linking up with Nacole at sixinthesticks for #concretewords.  This week’s prompt was The Frame.  
Finding Heaven Today
Teaching What is Good 
Deep Roots at Home
What Joy Is Mine
I've also linked up to:


  1. 'As a reformed tom boy and a woman with issues, confidence in the one thing that outwardly defines me as woman, does not come naturally.'.. this is me too. Such a wonderfully honest post and this? 'I want to frame you,” he says, “in my love.'.. beautiful.

    1. The Lord's tender words are always the most beautiful to me and often take me by surprise like the most comforting unforeseen kiss. Thank you for coming alongside today.

  2. This made me cry. I sometimes think that I'm completely broken; any beauty I might have had years ago is gone now and I spent those years hiding from people and believing myself to be inferior and inadequate in so many ways. Now I look at that girl and wish I could be her again, knowing what I know now.
    I am so glad that our God is Healer. There is no wound too small or hurt too profound for His touch.
    Thank you for this beautiful piece of writing from your heart. God bless you.

    1. Thank you for sharing. After posting this I found myself in tears at many points of the day as God deepened this truth for me. I may post more later about that so feel free to revisit anytime.

  3. Since I wrote about a wedding too from a different perspective, I was drawn to your link. I looked for part two but couldn't find it. I 'll check back to read the rest. God uses weddings to reveal many things to us, doesn't He?! I am glad He is showing you how beautiful you are and valued when you dwell in His loving arms. God bless, Maria at Delight Directed Living

    1. Thank you, Maria. It is amazing how God uses so many beautiful ways to speak his love to us. I love the name of your blog link and look forward to checking it out. Not sure why pt. 2 was so elusive, so here is the direct link. I'm new at this so hopefully it works.

  4. This is so tender and real. Thank you for sharing from your heart! It really touched me.

  5. Framed in His love...what a beautiful portrait, Karin! I love this entire metaphor. And I hear you about all those counterfeit frames. I get that. But from now on, I'll be "framing" it differently :)

  6. I'm glad it spoke to you. Thanks for stopping by.

  7. I love the analogy of the frame! We are so very loved, aren't we? Sometimes it's easy to forget that we are princesses, daughters of the King of kings! Thanks for the lovely post.