“Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; fret not thyself in any wise to do evil. For evildoers shall be cut off; but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. But the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.” Psalms 37: 8-11
Today’s Christian daily devotional
“I hate this pageant stuff.” The Italian photographer with a heavy accent leaned in and whispered in my ear.
“Want to do something really cutting edge?” Damien snuffed and took a long drag of his skinny cigarette. His fingers were just as long and thin.
“Let’s talk when this is over.” I smiled but kept my ears focused on hearing my name being called from behind the curtain.
We were standing backstage. Damien’s work was over, but I was still waiting for my cue. This was the last round of the semifinalists.
I peeked from behind the black velvet curtains. The bright stage lights washed out the sea of strangers. My heart was thumping so hard, I felt like it might rattle off a few rhinestones from my evening gown.
Everything I had worked so hard for boiled down to this precious moment. My stomach did a crazy flip-flop as they called my name to the stage; I took a deep breath. My lips exploded into the most radiant smile I could muster. The spotlight warmed me. Gracefully finding my place on stage, I smiled and turned; just like I was trained to do.
Little did I know that within fifteen minutes that smile would be missing for the rest of my trip.
After that final round, the winners were announced. It made no difference that I had won third place out of 120 girls. All I could focus on was–that I wasn’t first place. All those months of training and preparation had suddenly lost their purpose.
The flowers and the token gift basket were worthless trinkets for a girl who wouldn’t accept anything but first place. I was born to be a winner, not third place.
After taking masking my pain and faking a smile for the publicity shots, I shot backstage to quickly gather my clothes and beauty kit.
“The offer still stands.” Damien’s shadow stood in the doorway.
“So, what are you offering?” I dump the beautiful, lush roses in the trash beside me.
“We are in Mexico. I want to shoot photos that are exciting and artistic. Tomorrow you girls are booked for another catalog shoot on the beach. Boring.” He rolls his eyes in complete exasperation. I feel his pain. We have been shooting the same kind of footage the whole week we have been in this Mexican paradise. “Haven’t you had enough of this dog and pony show yet?” He digs into his shirt pocket, finding a loose cigarette.
“I am beyond sick of it. I’m ANGRY. I did all that work for nothing.” Hoisting the cumbersome trophy in one hand, I grapple with my makeup bag in the other.
“Now that’s the spirit!” Damien’s unlit cigarette hangs on the edge of his mouth while he swipes my trophy of defeat into his arms. We head towards the hotel elevators walking in sync.
“Emotion is the source of all art. Let’s make art, not catalogs.” Damien pushes a lock of his long silver hair behind his ear. His eyes look renewed and excited. I press the button to my floor.
“Meet me at the pier at sundown tomorrow. I’ll make it worth your time.” He winked while gently setting the trophy on the slice of carpet in front of my hotel door.
“I’ll think about it.” Nothing about this modeling adventure seemed to be worth the time or trouble. His offer was more than a temptation—it intrigued me.
The next day’s photo shoots slowly plodded along. My interest in Damien’s offer escalated the lower the sun hung in the sky.
When I found a quiet moment to slip away, I headed toward the pier. Out of a hundred and twenty models, who would really notice one girl missing? Seeing the small crew of about five, I stopped.
“I was hoping you would show.” Damien’s eyes lit up as he kissed me on both cheeks.
“Your wardrobe is here.” He pointed to a pile of black latex on a chair. Dahlia will be doing your makeup.”
I nod at the cool blonde.
“Good! We’re going to use that pent up anger. It will be the fuel that will drive us to create!” Damien speaks passionately while Dahlia works quickly, throwing on thick layers of black eye shadow and mascara.
After applying black hairspray and donning a slick latex dress, I emerge looking like a whole new creature and I feel like one, too.
“Marvelous. Who needs cookie-cutter beauty when you have this!” Damien smiles like never before.
I stare at my unrecognizable reflection. Although I am hidden somewhere beneath the layers of goth makeup, I feel raw and exposed at the same time.
The pit of my stomach starts to glow warmly. It is the anger inside, finally finding an outlet to express itself on the outside. The sensation feels more than good; it is simply electrifying.
Tossing my blackened hair in the wind, adrenaline fills my veins like liquid fire. For the first time in a long time, I embrace the emotions that have been eating away at my insides. I feel alive again.
In Psalms 37:8-11 we are warned not to give into our anger and rage. The Bible says that this will be the very beginning of our destruction. The Lord promises that the meek will inherit the earth. And, although it sounds like a vulnerable position, it is actually the safest place to be.
When we submit to doing things God’s way, we are under the umbrella of His blessing and protection. In this place, God promises to defend the weak and bring them justice.
Having God as your defense can only take you higher.
“Dear Heavenly Father,
I am so angry. So many people have let me down, myself included. But, this does not make my anger get any easier to deal with. It seems like nothing ever seems to turn out right or get better for me.
I am tempted to just give up the fight.
When I read Psalms 37:8-11 my heart gets heavy. I realize that I have never been a meek person. I have never trusted you to defend me; therefore I have only become an enemy to myself.
Forgive me for my rage. I give it all to you. Show me what it means to really trust you and help me to do it right this time.
There is a reason I keep coming across the same issues in life. It is because I have never really dealt with the root cause of them.
Open my eyes to see the source of this anger and rage and give me the strength to give it all to you.
This has been my driving force up until now. I’m completely switching gears. In the name of Jesus, I submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit from now on, Amen.”
Thank you for reading today’s Christian daily devotional on verses: Psalms 37:8-11
Please check back and see what we have for you tomorrow!
Author: Julia Shalom Jordan