Three months prior to the start of my acne (engagement and wedding!) ((click images to scroll through!))
The first eight months of marriage looked like this for me! ((click images to scroll through!))
Three years ago acne rocked my world. It may seem petty or vain to some people, but the Lord used it to change my heart in more than one way. My whole life I had clear skin, then suddenly at twenty-three and a month into my marriage-I didn’t want to let my husband see my skin without makeup. I didn’t recognize myself in the mirror. It literally would shock me when I would wash my face and see the red bumps covering my once baby soft skin each like emergency sirens going off across my face. I was consumed with my insecurities and couldn’t bear to look people in the eye because I knew they weren’t looking at my eyes they were looking at my skin.
This is how my journey to complete health began.
First step to recovery: Admitting you have a problem.
I was in denial! I must be having an allergic reaction to something. All of the new vegan foods I had been eating. SOY, it has to be soy. Maybe RICE? My entirely Asian in-laws laughed that one off (now so do I!) Gluten. No. I love bread…it couldn’t be gluten. Chocolate (not my idea, of course) No. Not that either. Lord, have mercy, what could it be??
Step two: There is a higher power (Jesus) and he knows way more about your face than you.
Okay, Lord. Why is my face like this? Please I will do anything to make it better.
Stop worrying about it.
Yes, okay. I won’t think about…but why is it like this!?
When you are free, you will be free.
Step three: Depend on Jesus.
I had tried everything. Changing my diet, changing my face wash, bowel detoxing, you name it. It all helped some but none of it got rid of my acne. I couldn’t understand. But I knew that the Lord knew why and that in time he would show me if I was seeking the truth.
Step four: Search your heart.
Why did the way I looked consume me? My thoughts, my joy, my spirit all suffering simply because of how my face looked. WOW. When I put it that way, when I was honest with myself, I was embarrassed. How could the way I look matter so much when Jesus died for me?! There is nothing in this life that could ever mean more than this. My thoughts, my joy, and my spirit do depend on that one single event.
Step five: Be honest about your mistakes.
When you stop caring about what your skin looks like you will be free.
The Lord spoke this to me one morning. For me, this was profound. It was so simple and made so much sense, yet it seemed impossible. But I knew what the Lord had told me. All this time I tried to solve my problem physically and with my own strength when all I needed to do was focus on Jesus. I remember telling Ben, “The Lord told me today that my skin won’t clear up until I stop caring about it.” I felt silly, like a little girl. But he knew in his heart just as I did in mine, Jesus just wanted my heart and with it being consumed with insecurities, he couldn’t have it. Not fully.
Step six: Surrender.
This step is the simplest and hardest step all wrapped up in one word. Surrender. I still don’t know how to surrender. But I do it every day. I surrender my heart, my fear, my doubts, I surrender the things I don’t understand. It cannot be explained or understood, but the key I have found is to have a willing heart. If you are willing to give everything to Jesus, he will take it. That is surrendering.
Step seven: Jesus, I surrender.
What came out of me surrendering was this, surrendering meant believing that Jesus healed me even if my face did not reflect it. Even if I had acne for the rest of my life, it was okay. It was more than okay, it was freeing. It didn’t matter what my skin looked like because surrendering allowed Jesus to heal my heart.
Step eight and nine: Find people and share your story.
Share you story so that others that are hurting or suffering the way you have can see they are not alone. That Jesus is with them through everything. Even when it seems petty and vain like acne. He will heal those who seek Him, seek the truth, and believe in Him.
Step ten: Stay on track.
Keep your eyes open. Don’t wander off the path that Jesus made straight. Don’t allow yourself to get wrapped up in the thoughts or ideas that once caused you to lose focus on Jesus.
Step eleven: Grow.
Commit your life to becoming closer to Jesus.
Step twelve: Help others.
Whenever I have the slightest chance to talk about my skin, I DO! I offer the advice I know to be true, about food----cutting dairy, processed foods, refined sugars, drinking tons and tons of water. Detoxing to promote healthy digestive system. Exercising, because movement is life! But I also share what the Lord told me, that my face would never clear until it didn’t matter to me any more.
Once you have your focus ((Jesus)) right, here are some of the things I did to take care of my body ((a sacred temple of the Lord!))
-Eating a plant-based diet!
(Lots of fresh fruits and veggies, brown rice, almond milk, NO DAIRY, NO MEAT, NO ANIMAL BI-PRODUCTS!)
(We use practically all of Dr. Schulze's products! A lot of SUPERFOOD, and we try to do a Bowel Detox 1-2 times a year. A healthy digestive system helps everything in your body work better!)
(I still haven't stuck to a completely strict schedule of exercise but every bit counts! Do it when you can. Walking, running, and P90X3 are my favorite options!)
- Drink a ton of water!!
(Your main liquid intake should be water! You can use an app to make sure you are consuming enough. I also enjoy drinking tea and hot water with lemon! Keep sugary drinks to a minimum including coffee!)
Tell us your story! We would love to hear it :) and feel free to ask any questions!