Unglued: The Prisoners

Each Thursday, Kayse Pratt (she just launched a new website – check it out) and I are reading through Unglued. This week we are on Chapter Three: The Prisoners.

Jamie’s Thoughts

Well, as silly as this is, I would have totally titled this chapter something like, “The Masterpiece,” or “The Chisel.” That’s because I’ve been thinking of myself as a prisoner in Chapters 1 and 2, but Lysa is just now introducing the concept to us. She’s much more delicate in approaching it than I am. {I talk about myself in these terms all the time on my blog.} In the opening of this chapter, she shares about her friend, Cristina. Of all her anecdotal opening stories, this is my favorite one so far, because it is more personal, and I resonate with the brokenness and artistry that she paints. In this scene she is with her friend as she finds out that she will be going to prison. Cristina is her organizing friend who had only 3 years prior to her sentence helped make Lysa’s home  lovely using budget items Lysa would have otherwise not chosen.

Because that’s what makes an artist: the ability to see beyond what is to what can be.

Might this woman, [her friend Cristina] who always saw beauty in the broken, discarded things of the world, somehow see beauty hidden in her own life? Might I one day hear her say once again, “Trust me, it will be beautiful. You’ll see”?

Or would Cristina be stuck with a label? Remember last week, I told you how I often label myself? How I had to retrain my mind to think God’s thoughts over me? Apparently, I am not alone. And in order to become more beautiful, we have to allow God to chisel.

Let God chisel. “Trust me,” God says, “it will be beautiful. You’ll see.”

How many times has God given me this message this past year – so many! Oh, how it sometimes hurts when He chisels. So I thought of this video with my friend, Nikol. It is more powerful than my words. {Email subscribers, click here to come view it.}

Chisel from Valleydale Church on Vimeo.

Try it! Look in the mirror and speak His words: __________ is God’s original masterpiece! Take heart, friend, He is sculpting you into a beautiful piece of art!

Kayse’s Thoughts

I have a confession.

I came unglued tonight.

Actually, I’m still feeling pretty unglued.

I have more things to do than time in the day, and we leave for a trip tomorrow at 5am.

I have been looking forward to this trip for weeks. MONTHS. 5 days to relax, be with family, enjoy good wine and good food, catch up with old friends, and just breathe.

I miss breathing.

I certainly didn’t do it tonight, when I let frustration and irritation and being overwhelmed get the better of me.


I am realizing that I come unglued under pressure. When I feel like expectations exceed my ability. When I am asked to do instead of asked how I’m doing.

So, I’ll be honest with you, tonight I need some grace.

I know this chapter was about labels and how they imprison us…how we imprison ourselves with them. But what I heard, what I needed to hear from this chapter, was grace.

“Trust Me,” God says. “It will be beautiful. You’ll see.”

Grace. For me. For you. In the midst of our coming unglued, He is here, pulling back the curtain to reveal a big picture view. Reminding us that this moment is not all there is, and that this moment is being woven into something beautiful.

Grace takes that unglued moment and allows me to look at it, step away from it, and grow.

Grace gives me identity that is bigger than the labels I place on myself, the criticisms I sit in. Grace helps me see myself the way He sees me.

Yes, that is what I need tonight. And tomorrow, when you read this. And every other day that I come unglued. Which is often when I’m this tired.

You too? Well, it’s nice to know I’m in good company. smile

Lysa’s Hope for Labels:

1. Identify the label as a lie meant to tear you down.

2. Choose to view this circumstance as a call to action, not a call to beat yourself up mentally.

3. Use the momentum of tackling one label to help you tackle more.

 Pray with Me

(Excerpt from Participant’s Guide of Unglued video study)

Lord, thank You for seeing me. I am so grateful that You know me even better than I know myself. I am struggling right now with some self-defeating labels. I especially feel stuck with…

God, soften my heart. I know I need to surrender who I am right now so You can chisel me into my true self, the person You made me to be. Amen.

Action Steps

  • Read, meditate, and consider memorizing, Ephesians 2:10, “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (NLT)
  • Review “Lysa’s Hope for Labels.” Think of how you’ve labeled yourself and how you need to defeat the lies you’ve believed. Look in the Bible to find a Scripture to help you relabel yourself. If you need help, please email Jamie or Kayse and let them know what you are looking for. A good place to start is Psalm 139.
  • When you see yourself becoming that thing you don’t want to be, speak His truth over yourself and let it seep in. Pause. And try again.

 Chapter 3 Reflection Questions (We’d love for you to share in the comments!)

What label(s) do you place on yourself? Are you more critical toward yourself than you would be toward others?

How do you need grace today?

How can you extend grace and affirmation to someone else today?

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  1. i saw that clip several yrs ago, & had a hunch that’s what i would find when i clicked the play button here. and even though i saw it before (& watched it numerous times), i needed to hear that again this morning. because i have no other words right now, just flooding tears.

  2. Thank you for sharing…just added this to my buffer to tweet…blessings to you :)


  1. […] less mature than their kids or allow the kids to be the dominant one simply because you lost it? As I mentioned in an earlier post, it is good to find a verse of Scripture that speaks to your struggle or insecurity, and then […]

  2. […] less mature than their kids or allow the kids to be the dominant one simply because you lost it? As I mentioned in an earlier post, it is good to find a verse of Scripture that speaks to your struggle or insecurity, and then […]

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