Have you ever heard the story of  “Cyrano de Bergerac”? It was a play written in the late 1800’s about a man in the French army, named Cyrano. Cyrano was a soldier. Cyrano was a passionate and strong-willed man known for many pursuits and ambitions which included magnificence as a duelist, poet and musician. However, Cyrano had an enormous nose that he was extremely self-conscious of. He was hopelessly in love with a woman named, Roxane. Cyrano had little hope that she could ever have interest in him for she was both beautiful and intelligent. He had so much self-doubt because of his appearance, that he failed to acknowledge his own worth as a man by the measure of all he was gifted in. He didn’t feel he was good enough to have her love. As a result, instead of realizing the love he could have had, he battles his three greatest adversaries of life; falsehood, prejudice and compromise. His story ended in tragedy that could have had prosperity had he shown genuine sincerity to himself first and also to Roxane.

Do you ever feel like Cyrano? He slighted himself the love of a lifetime because he had self imposed limitation. Isn’t it true we are our own worst critics and some never learn to get past the pain of self induced limitations.  I imagine this is because we know ourselves the best. We know our own private thoughts about ourselves. We remember every hurtful word ever spoken over us. We know our darkest secrets, or maybe not so dark secrets. We keep a hidden file in our minds of every bad deed or blunder we have ever committed. We know our every flaw and shortcoming. Sure, we are aware of our strengths as well, but most people, even if they never verbalize it,  tend to measure themselves by their areas of weakness instead of staying within their strengths. For some people this painful awareness becomes a major stumbling block to true victory in life. Let me now transition to another man by the name of Nehemiah.

Nehemiah, like Cyrano, was a man of action. Nehemiah was not a soldier like Cyrano, but he did serve a King. In fact, Nehemiah was the cupbearer to the King of Persia (Neh. 1:11). Nehemiah was of Jewish descent and longed to go the aid of his people who desperately needed help rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. Nehemiah sought the King and received permission to go to the people and build a wall. What he did was so much more…he built an ever-enduring legacy of leadership amongst a people who were broken down in heart and spirit. A people much like Cyrano.

What was the difference between Nehemiah and Cyrano (aside from one being a character in a play and the other an actual figure in history)? Nehemiah revered his King, but he also knew that he had FAVOR with the King. History states that Nehemiah was very frightened to speak to the king of this matter. So he prayed, mustered up the courage, and acted despite his own self-doubts.  There is a King in heaven who favors you and you do not need to muster the courage to approach His Throne. Would you like to know how?

Yours is a heart that intoxicates Him. When we seek him out it’s like our prayers begin to cloud the judgments of man, which tend to be harsh, and open the gates that release healing waters. Waters so pure and clean a path is carved in the darkness for God’s pure light to pour out with such force that it breaks free all who are bound by captivity. The result is freedom from the past, freedom from broken heartedness, freedom from heaviness, freedom from issues of worth, freedom from self doubt…freedom from pain. So may I ask, “why are you so hard on yourself?” Maybe it’s time to look fear in the face and just stop being so afraid. It is time to stop being like Cyrano, focused on his nose attached to his face, and to look out and beyond the shortcomings of the flesh or circumstance and look to future things. Who said you weren’t enough? Why can’t you be a person after God’s own heart? Why can’t you have an unspeakable love that so edifies your soul you feel content at last? Why must you continue with this doubt and shame? You can have favor with both God and man. Favor is favor and is as blind to flaws of humanity as romantic love coerces the heart.

God is respecter of no man, but lover of all. We do not need to earn his Favor. We do not need to convince him to love us. Imagine, for just one moment that you, too, were like Nehemiah.  YOU are cupbearer to the King. What kind of drink offering would you bring?

He longs for your praise and adoration of who He is. Not because he has ego that needs to be engaged, that’s not it at all. Journey through your imagination with me for a moment and dare to dream of a love so deep because the Lover of your Soul is enamored with you. This love is a reality. You don’t have to hide your flaws and imperfections because he knows them, each and every one. His eye and mind are on something entirely different. He is captivated when he catches your gaze and He is enamored by your smile. Like a mother with a newborn child, she glows with radiance as she looks upon her child. She knows the child isn’t perfect and the child will have setbacks and failures in life. SHE DOESN’T CARE. All she is focused on is the love in her heart and the desire to care for and nurture a love so rare it must be Divine, it must be Sincere, for why else would her heart swell? Why else would her joy be so grand? Why else? She is in love.

When we pray to God and offer simple gratitude, our heart to his, it is like a fragrant flower releasing its sweet pollen…an aroma so pleasing. Your prayers do not have to be long or wordy. There is no need for impressive vocabulary, religious rituals or even a hint of eloquence to our speech. It simply needs to come from the heart. Try it and see for yourself. You are the one who will feel blessed and lifted up. Your mood will lighten. Your perspective will begin to brighten. Your heaviness of heart will dissipate as you begin to anticipate more time with Him. You may begin to believe in yourself and see past the nose upon your face, the circumstances of your life, past failures and mistakes, into the realm of unlimited potential.

You are a glorious crown in the hand of a King. There is no shame, no defeat. No awkwardness of appearance like we see in the example of Cyrano. There is only a covenant of Love He desires to keep. So, approach His Throne and approach others with the confidence of Nehemiah. God loves you and longs to lavish grace and tender mercies upon you.

He is besotted.

“Lord, bless us, each and everyone as we thank you for who You are and that you made no mistakes when you made each of us. Bless us to see ourselves and to see each other as you see us. May we dare to dream the biggest dreams our minds eye has ever seen. Thank you for life and that you know the answer, every last one, to every question we have. Thank you for loving us. Amen”

Blessings be yours this day, and forevermore. -Nicole