Beauty. What in the world does it mean to be beautiful these days? I feel like everything I see and hear when it comes to defining beauty points solely toward the outward appearance. For instance, movies and television use women’s faces and bodies to show what “true beauty” is. Magazines and advertisements persuade people into buying things that will make them look and feel beautiful. In fact, every year People Magazine has the ‘World’s Most Beautiful’ issue (Sandra Bullock is this year’s most beautiful woman). It is funny to me that I know deep down true beauty isn’t necessarily physical, but time and time again, that is how I recognize it and I strive to be just that: physically beautiful.
I read an article that said women spend an average of $13,000 per year on beauty products of some sort. That is ridiculous! You see, we as people value beauty a whole lot differently than God does. It’s a shame because we tend to put so much pressure on ourselves to conform to the world’s view of beauty, and if we don’t quite fit that standard, we feel ‘ugly,’ or not good enough. BUT GOD. Yes…God looks at our hearts! [Thank goodness because there are some days I don’t look so beautiful J]
Over the past few weeks I have been trying to find a nursing job, and it has been a big struggle. I have never really been “rejected” so much before, and it seems as though that has been all that has happened recently. I have also really struggled with my confidence lately because there have been things others have said about me, and it’s made me question myself and the person I am. Through this bump in the road, the devil has continued to attack me with self-doubt, shame, embarrassment, and feelings as though I am just not good enough! But God says, “oh yes you are!” Thank you Jesus.
I am reading this book called Becoming Spiritually Beautiful by Sharon Jaynes with our women’s bible study group, and man, does God have some miraculous timing for it. Sharon does an outstanding job describing what real beauty is in Christ, and how we (as humans) tend to skew the true meaning of beauty. She gives a long list of who we are in Christ, and how he sees us. I absolutely love them, so I picked out a few to list below. In fact, I started writing them down to remind myself. You should try it too!
I am the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13)
I am the light of the world (Matthew 5:14)
I am valuable to God (Matthew 6:26)
I am accepted by Christ (Romans 15:7)
I am a child of God (Galatians 4:7)
I am a saint (Ephesians 1:1)
I am adopted into God’s family (Ephesians 1:5)
I am chosen by God, holy and dearly loved (Colossians 3:12)
I am God’s workmanship (Ephesians 2:10)
I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13)
I am holy in God’s sight, without blemish and free of accusation (Colossians 1:22)
I am now a child of God (1 John 3:1-2)
I get so excited reading verses about the beauty God sees in us, but it is our job to recognize it.
The devil tries so hard to bring things we did in the past to the forefront, and make us feel worthless, inadequate and ugly. But God tells us to press on! Forget what is behind and strain toward what is ahead (Philippians 3:13-14).
I talked to a good friend I met in Virginia. We shared how God transformed and continues to transform each of our lives. How He pulled us out from such a dark place, and pursued us all the way through it. And even through all of the crap we did, Christ still looks at us as saints, as His child, as valuable, as holy and without blemish. WHAT?? All of the times I chose not to follow, all of the times I turned my back, and I rejected Him, He still loves me and sees beauty in my mess!
I still strive to understand how much God loves me, and how God sees beauty in such a disaster. Ya’ll, when you truly start to understand even a portion of how God sees you, you will feel like the most cherished and beautiful thing. Take those verses that I gave you from the book, write them down on a piece of paper, and read them every day with me. They will help remind you of the beauty God sees in us in times that the devil tries to steal your joy and confidence. I pray today that you would catch even a glimpse of what God sees in you.
YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.