There is an unmistakable and genuine joy in her eyes that you that very obviously comes from somewhere beyond the surface. She is engaging, always quick to offer a word of encouragement to those who need it, and is a woman unashamed to share the testimony of her life story and the healing that came from some of her deepest hurts.
Phoebe is a wife, a mother, a friend, a sister, a daughter...and one of the most beautiful women I know both inside and out.
I am proud to share with you all the images below, even more proud to share with you all some words from Phoebe herself. The details of our stories as women vastly differ, yet interestingly enough the struggles of self-worth and misplaced identity seem to be the all-too common thread that connects us, making our stories actually more similar than we thought.
As with all stories shared here, I hope Phoebe's words reach deep and awaken you to the unchanging truth that you are a woman eternally loved, deeply forgiven, and unbelievably valued by a God that is closer to you know.
"I struggled with getting my approval, value, and worth in all the wrong places and in all the wrong ways. In my teen years, it got me into a lot of trouble, leading to traumatic experiences. These painful experiences caused me to fill voids in the wrong ways; I hurt myself and others often.
The scars followed me for so long to the point where I did not want to get healthy [despite] all the health issues I have. I was afraid if I was thinner again, all the things that happened to me then would happen all over again. I was afraid I would make the same poor decisions, too. I had to really confront these fears and lies head on. That was hard and extremely painful. "
"But I needed to believe God was GREATER than my fear, GREATER than those lies and GREATER than my past. Because He is. I knew that in my head, but I really needed to believe it in my heart. And when I did, I realized grace means that all my mistakes, all my pain, and my past now serve a purpose instead of serving shame."
"...grace means that all my mistakes, all my pain, and my past now serve a purpose instead of serving shame."
"Our world is so obsessed with outward appearance. Don't fall into that obsession. We are only going to be here in this world for a short period of time. Don't spend it on pleasing or trying to impress people who don't even matter. It is a tiresome hamster wheel that gets you no where but feeling exhausted. Focus on how God sees you so beautiful and whole, despite what you look like on the outside or feel on the inside."
"Beautiful to me is facing fears and challenges even when it is hard or painful. Beautiful is seeing the amazing outcome of gold, pearls, butterflies, and so many other things in life that have to go through turmoil, fire or hell before it can become what it is."
"[Beautiful] is getting back up 1001 times when you have fallen 1000. It's finishing the race because you now believe your worth and value."
"Beautiful is seeing the amazing outcome of gold, pearls, butterflies, and so many other things in life that have to go through turmoil, fire or hell before it can become what it is."
"I feel most beautiful when I am spending my quiet time with God. He reminds me who I am in Him, not by anyone's view of me, including myself. He reminds me in beautiful ways how precious I am, how loved I am, and how beautiful I am - despite what I do or don't do. He gives me the ultimate confidence and constant reminders that I don't have to live in fear, in lies, or my past, and [life] is one crazy, yet beautiful adventure!"
Many thanks to Kat Tinney for her work on Phoebe's hair and makeup!