For All Women, Everywhere

Sometimes I look in the mirror and I see everything I am. And I don’t like what I see. If I stand there long enough, I start to hate myself. Why can’t I look beautiful? I stand there and I hate myself because of the way my legs look – disfigured, large and difficult to maneuver. I hate myself for not being thin. I hate everything about myself. And then it all spirals from there. You’re not good enough. You’re ugly and you’re worthless. No one wants to be seen with you. You have nothing to offer. I’m not alone in these thoughts. These thoughts are your thoughts. And when you look in the mirror, you sometimes start hating yourself too.

I have so many beautiful friends. Thin, tall friends. Beautiful women with long hair, straight teeth, manicured fingernails, perfect eyebrows, nice clothing. Beautiful women with amazing legs that can carry them wherever they go. And I love my friends, but sometimes I hate them. At least I think I do. But when I really think about it, I know it’s not true. No, it’s not hate – it’s envy. A small little word for such a big thing.

Envy eats you up from the inside. It starts as a little whisper in your heart. Tiny, almost unnoticeable. But the more you allow the whisper to grow, the more it completely poisons your soul. Envy is the best friend of comparison. And ladies, we all get caught into the comparison trap. And it’s toxic. It’s completely savage in how much it can tear you apart from the inside out.

And that’s the thing – that’s the crazy, ironic thing. You can be a super model, with a “perfect” body and seemingly have it all. But if you don’t have a beautiful soul, you’re not really beautiful at all. Because the inside shines out, and that’s what people really see. That’s what God sees.

Like that time when Samuel was looking for a king. God had sent him to the place where the king He had appointed would be. But He didn’t tell him which one it would be. So Samuel traveled there, and stood among Jesse’s sons, looking. He looked at these handsome, strong men and thought they’d be the perfect fit. But they weren’t. Imagine Samuel’s surprise when God revealed the chosen king was just a young, small shepherd. So young that he wasn’t even called in to meet Samuel in the first place. But, God loved David so much – He loved David’s heart.

But the LORD said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

And David loved God. David served God well. David became someone known as “a man after God’s own heart.” David might not have had it all together that day when Samuel went looking. But God could see his beauty. Do you want to know the real truth? God can see yours too.

You are beautiful. You are unique. You are beautifully unique when you are serving God. Like David, He’s created you for a purpose. He’s given you specific talents and abilities that you can use to serve Him well. And when you do these things, girl, you’re the most beautiful creature on earth.

Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes.
Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 1 Peter 3: 3-4

Sometimes I look in the mirror and I see everything I am. And I can appreciate what I see, even if it’s not considered to be beautiful to others. I see grey hair that I’ve decided not to cover up, because each grey hair reminds me I’m blessed to be growing older (and hopefully wiser). I see non manicured hands, and I am blessed because I’m and to use them to serve others and not be afraid of breaking a nail. I see my deformed legs, and even though it’s my worst, most awful feature, I know these legs still work. They still carry me through my days, and every day make me stronger in some way.

Girl, sometimes I look in the mirror and on a rare occasion, I see what God sees. Or at the very least, what others see of Him in me. And in those moments, I shine. In those moments, I feel confident and beautiful. In those moments, the longer I look, the more I love myself. You’re serving Him well. You’re the only one who can do what He’s asked of you. God is pleased with the work you’re doing here, so keep it going, girl! If you stand there long enough, looking for the Spirit in your life instead of your outward appearance, you’ll see it too. And you’ll see that you’re more beautiful than you thought you could be. You’ll see that every time you serve Him, you’ll just get more and more breathtaking.

I have many beautiful friends. Women who appear more beautiful each time I see them because I can see His light shining in their hearts. And it’s more powerful than the new outfit they’re wearing. Or their gorgeous hair. Or their manicures. It’s breathtaking and it lasts forever. And I don’t envy them then – but thank God for giving me such lovely women to encourage me and walk alongside me and to serve with. Instead of being toxic, it’s like sweet perfume for the soul.

Girl, go check yourself. What do you see? What do you really see? Find your inner beauty, and let it shine for Him. You are stunningly beautiful!

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