You know...we're all beautiful. I'm not just talking about inner beauty. We're all beautiful on the outside, too.
The Psalmist doesn't say without reason,
"For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well." --Psalm 139:13-14, NIV
And...he's not just talking about being wonderfully made on the inside, but on the outside, also. Each of us are beautiful, for God created us, each one, in His image!
Our bodies are simply shells. Our spirits, on the other hand - those are the eternal things. Our spirit will live forever, and truly, my spirit - in whatever form - will live with Christ in paradise. Forever. What a gift!!
But back to what I was saying. What I just learned a few days ago. Because I didn't know this before...that we are all beautiful, physically beautiful.
I read a book. Called The Martyr's Song, by Ted Dekker. And I had to read most of it a second time before I got it...
Yes, this shell, this flesh, is not eternal. But God created all of me, including my body, my face, my hair, my toes, shaping each feature the way He wanted it to be. He creates beauty - He doesn't create fractured, broken, ugly things (remember, "Your works are wonderful, I know that full well"?). Look around you! Look at the beauty of pure nature! Yes, there are animals killing each other for food, predator and prey...that, however, was not in the holy and pure design of God. Instead, all was peace. And joy. And love.
So, who creates beauty? Yeah, that's right: God. God creates beauty.
Then why do we allow people to tell us what beauty is in a human being, loved in God's sight? As if they know! If one doesn't know God, one doesn't know beauty. Not true beauty. They might see glimpses of it in His creations...but they can't define what it means on a person. They can't create beauty.
Beauty is not in the popular clothes, the jewelry, the make-up, the long eyelashes, the clear face, the perfect lips, the curvy figure, the tanned skin...
I might sound crazy, but that's not beauty. That's not all beauty is, at least. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder...and the Beholder is God. If someone has all that, all of what I just listed above, they are beautiful. And if someone has none of that, they are still beautiful. Period. Not one over the other. We are all beautiful.
I'm not sure if I'm getting my point across clearly. I hope I am. It's a slippery concept at first, like trying to grasp water as it slips through your fingers. You have it....and then it's gone. It takes some time getting used to, changing your whole perspective on the subject, but once you do...it's so simple, so clear, so right.
And why is this so important? I mean, really, our physical bodies don't matter all that much when you look at it from the eternal perspective...but to know that we are all truly, truly physically beautiful...it changes everything, things that are eternally important. It's going with God's truth and going against the enemy's lies. It's totally against what this world says, totally against the message I've become used to.
It's against pointing out a certain person and thinking they're prettier than the rest. It's against wanting to get closer to a certain person simply because they have a "pretty" face and fashionable clothes and stylish hair. It's against comparing and favoring the girl who's thin like a twig over the girl who's not so much so. It's against looking at myself unhappily, being unsatisfied with how I look. It's against wanting to be thinner, not for health reasons, but instead just hoping that if you lose more weight you'll look better...that's losing sight of the truth that we are all beautiful.
In the knowledge of this truth...there's no reason to compare myself to others...no reason to judge others instantly merely by what they look like...
Instead, I know that they are beautiful...and loved. so dearly, dearly loved. oh, how loved we are!
Read The Martyr's Song. Listen to what God is telling you. Not only through this book, but through His Word, too, most definitely...just spend time reading through it. Nothing else. Just...listen to Him, read His Holy Word. It - He will change you and grow you like you could never imagine, tenderly, firmly, lovingly, forever.
And this relatively short novel I read the other day...it also brought a change in me. Through it, God may show you something different than what He showed me...but it won't be totally different. Because it's all connected, all related. To each other. To life. And most especially...to God.
May you have a faith-filled, joy-filled, love-filled, hope-filled, grace-filled...God-filled week, you beautiful, beloved child of God.