Choosing to Focus on Our True Beauty

Woman holding her face in her hands

Social awkwardness finds me. In fact, the more I try to avoid it, the more inevitable it is to come. I’m the girl who packs my daughter’s shoes instead of mine to a weekend writer’s conference, only to discover they’re about half a size too big—enough to cause them to slip, very unglamorously, with every step.

I’m the girl who discovers, after a speaking engagement, that my lipstick turned my teeth bright pink.

And I’m the woman who once attended the Cattle Baron’s Ball in North Platte Nebraska wearing glittery pumps and a full-on gown.

I wanted to look beautiful. To stand out.

I did, but so not in the way I’d hoped.

So, there I was, a grown woman looking like a prom queen wanna-be, surrounded by a bunch of cowboys. Standing in the middle of that hay-covered barn, the aroma of horse manure mingling with grilled hotdogs, I was mortified, and wanted to go home immediately. I told my husband that very thing, Again and again, stomping my sparkling, mud-covered shoe for emphasis. Maybe I hoped if I tapped them hard enough, they’d work like Dorothy’s ruby slippers and the Great Wizard would whisk me home.

All I could think of was what an idiot I must’ve looked like. And all my husband could think about was how much he loved Image of woman standing in dirt and straw in a gownme. He grabbed my hand and pulled me close, his arm forming a protective barrier around me, and whispered in my ear, “You’re here with me. You’re mine. Who cares what anyone else thinks.”

Ladies, I think God’s saying the same thing to us.

So often, we can feel like we donned our best dress shoes only to step ankle deep in a pile of manure. The poo smells, sure. We’re bummed about the shoes and nylons, but what cuts deepest are the inadequacies those experiences expose.

When did we allow our identity to get tied into our looks and fashion choices? When did we trade the depth of beauty, true beauty, for such a shallow lie? There’s nothing wrong with dressing nice or getting one’s hair done, but in doing so, may we never forget where our true beauty lies.

We know this intellectually, but it’s easy to forget this in our self-obsessed, photo-shopped culture. To remain centered in Christ takes work, determination, and practice. We have the power to control our thought life and protect our hearts. But we must, daily, make the choice to do so. When we walk into a room full of other women, we can either feed all our self-defeating thoughts that tell us we’re not good enough or pretty enough or smart enough, or we can remember God’s presence and power within us, what He says about us, and we can determine to live in that.

Truly, we can.

We can soak in God’s truth and rest in His grace. We can give Him the final say.

We can filter absolutely everything—every thought and interaction—through the lens of His love and grace.

We can live victoriously, like the beautiful, radiant masterpieces God created us to be. Wholly Loved wants to help us do just that. This week, we’ve been talking about focusing on our inner beauty and taking steps to develop that. Join us on Facebook, engage in the conversation, and be encouraged in your walk with Jesus! For those of you wondering what it’s like to attend one of our conferences, check out this video!

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  1. Oh Jennifer, how I relate!! I’m glad I’m the only one who feels like the misfit at many occasions. I live in Italy, the land of fashion. Surrounded by beautiful people who have the knack of looking perfect all the time. I feel like Raggedy Anne!! But I love what your husband said to you. (He sounds a lot like mine.) And I love, love, love the thought that God is saying the very same thing to us. Yes, that is what he does. He draws us close and says “You’r mine.” And it is enough, isn’t it? I found you through Gail’s link, and oh what a blessing. Glad I found your blog.

    1. Hi, Sheila!

      Italy! What a beautiful, historical country! I can understand your feelings! I’m so glad you found my blog, too, and that this post encouraged you. God is so good and loving and kind! <3

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