There were lots of times when I felt ugly and unattractive, unwanted and left out.
Other times I have placed too much emphasis on my looks, taken pride in my fashionable outfits and what was painted on that morning.
I have been teased about my weight and insecure about my breakouts. I have thought myself better than others and succumbed to pride in appearances. I have felt vain for putting on nice clothes and make up and like I didn’t ever look nice enough.
True Beauty vs. Vanity – don’t we all struggle with it?
The other day I read an articele on Cross Walk from Jill Swanson, author of Simply Beautiful: Inside and Out. This is how she starts her book talking about “Beauty Without Vanity”:
"Balancing beauty with humility is an ongoing struggle for today’s woman. None of us want to appear vogue on the outside and vague on the inside. If we were to be honest with ourselves, we would all like to look the best we can. Clothing and appearance affect how we feel and think about ourselves. They can lift our spirits and help give us confidence to face the real world.
"The body is God’s handiwork. We have a responsibility to take care of it and to present ourselves in a way that will compliment the Kingdom of God. How we appear on the outside reflects our integrity and competence. Through initial contact with people, fifty-five percent of our perceived credibility is based on appearance alone! First impressions lay the groundwork for establishing trust and believability."
There is something in a woman that longs to be affirmed, to be seen as beautiful. Even though this is true, my heart has been humbled lately. Through The Difference Project I have seen just how much emphasis I have put in what I put on. Sure, I want to take care of myself like the article was saying, but I want to radiate beauty from the inside even more so. I truly needed to be reminded of this.
The most beautiful women I have ever meet have been radiant with Christ. They just glowed with His beauty. Sure, they were all shapes and sizes, had different eye color and skin tone...but what I noticed was not their outfits, hair or make up. What I noticed was their heart for the Lord, an inward beauty that made their outward appearance beautiful as well.
The world's standard of beauty will always be changing, but the Lord's standard never changes. This is the kind of beauty that I desire above all else. I want to see myself as the Lord sees me - as His precious daughter. The world may look at me according to their standards of beauty, but true beauty lies in having a heart like His. May I ever gaze in the mirror of His Word and seek to be like Him - the most Beautiful One.