My sister is pleading with me and I'm not really rocking, I'm leaning forward, my elbows on my knees with the phone at my ear. She is begging me to start looking at myself differently. She tells me I must. As though my life depends on it.
That when I look in the mirror I need to see that I am beautiful. I just don't see it.
When you are half-way through your thirties and all of your womanhood life you have seen yourself as less-than, how on earth are you just supposed to start seeing yourself in a different light?
I don't see beauty when my own reflection is staring back at me.
When I say that outloud, see it in black and white, I see how dreadfully wrong I am. But, how do you correct a mistake that you have made so often it is ingrained; a habit; a tangled web; a lie that destroys?
In this world so caught up in size and proportion and perfection, airbrushing and glamour and flawlessness what do you do when you simply don't measure up, when you may or may not be a size 2 and your measurements are way out of proportion and your glitter is not all that glamourous and all you see are your flaws and lack of perfection?
I am not naive enough to think this is only my problem.
For some reason we are reaching for an ideal that doesn't even exist as though we could actually gather gold at the end of the rainbow. But we always come up empty handed.
"Christina Kelly, who has been the successful editor of Elle Girl, YM, Jane, and Sassy, wrote a confessional article about the process of the female magazine industry:
Unless we come to terms with who we truly are and how we have been created and chosen we will struggle with true beauty.Why do we crave celebrities? Here’s my theory. To be human is to feel inconsequential. So we worship celebrities and seek to look like them. All the great things they have done we identify with in order to escape our own inconsequential lives. But it’s so dumb. With this stream of perfectly airbrushed, implanted, liposuctioned stars, you would have to be an absolute powerhouse of self-esteem already not to feel totally inferior before them. So we worship them because we feel inconsequential, but doing it makes us feel even worse. We make them stars, but then their fame makes us feel insignificant. I am part of this whole process as an editor. No wonder I feel soiled at the end of the day." ('King's Cross', Timothy Keller)
No amount of make-up can effectively remove a miserable scowl, no adorning of costly apparel will cause us to be anymore precious, and no amount of airbrushing can make a heart at peace.
But I can look into a mirror and say I'm beautiful because I have been created in the image of One who is 'altogether lovely' and although that likeness has been distorted because of sin, it is being restored by grace and I am being made ~ being re-created ~ to be 'more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image' and he has 'clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,'
Oh, I see my flaws and it is hard to see the beauty, but I will not let the world define beauty for me any longer. I will accept myself for what and whose I am ~ a masterpiece of God.
Linking up here at Emily's, Jen's and Jennifer's