It's always been the way in for doubt and self-consciousness. Even before mirrors and social media, we knew if we were beautiful because of how others saw us. We knew, or we hoped with Eve, that there might be something to make us wiser and wisdom could give us the key to eternal life, or eternal youth, or at least the key to a man's heart. And that might make us happy, right?
Beauty has always been a way in for the wretched father of lies. Having it can make you vain and not having it can make you self-focused.
Which is the same.
Which is sad.
God never intended beauty to be that way.
No amount of silicone or surgery or exercise or excess will ever make you more acceptable. You will never be more truly loved because of it. No "selfies" with arched back, no piercings, no diet and no article of clothing - or lack thereof - will ever make you more beautiful. Ever.
And just for the record? Just to be honest and clear and call it like it is - "sexy" is for married people. Don't try to be something you're not.
You are created in the image of God, whether you love Him for it or not. Created in the image of the God Who thought up Monarch butterflies and mountain lakes and cocoa beans and the color turquoise.
The God Who saw an Egyptian slave-girl in the desert and called her by name, because she was made in His image and important.
God opened her eyes to see a well of water and how desperately do we need God to do that for us? To open all of our beauty-seeking eyes to see the beauty already present? Already shaped and unique, created for life-giving and glory-living.
That's what I want every girl to know.
Whether you do all the right things to be approved or all the wrong things to be noticed, I want you to know that your unadorned beauty is from God and you've got it, girl.
You don't even have to try.
It's a gift we've all been given and the greatest shame is to live without Beauty, or to live with artificial beauty when the world is full of His natural wonder.
But I know it's hard to believe.
Sometimes I catch myself singing a song with my mouth and not my heart. My lips move around words that my heart is paying no attention to, and I can sing the whole thing without ever engaging. So I get it. In my head these words are true in the big picture, for all of us. In my heart, though, I struggle to think that I'm important enough to God to really claim to have an ounce of His beauty or His attention.
So I get that you might struggle, too.
Engage in this with me: beauty is beheld by those who see God, and you can know that you are beautiful when you know that He lives in you.
To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. ~ Col. 1:27
The more I see God in His word and, subsequently, in my life, the more I see beauty all around. And the more I see beauty all around, the less I feel like I need to be more to be beautiful.
The beauty we long to have is in Jesus, friends.
And now I'll put my soapbox away.