Is this what you think of when you think of “beauty”? If it is, you’re among many people. In the past few weeks I’ve been attempting to define its full meaning. And yes, this is a beautiful picture of a beautiful girl and she very much represents the word, but if all beauty is just this, what does a person have left when the wrinkles appear? Their skin begins to sag and fat collects around their middle? I’m not going to talk in-depth about “inner beauty”, although it is a facet of what I’m saying, it’s not the whole of it. The beauty I’m speaking of is the beauty God gave you.
I came across a song by MercyMe* that speaks of the many voices that tell people throughout their lives that they’re soiled, ugly, and not worth anything. I’ve listened to those voices more often than I’d like to admit. Think of the times when you’ve felt the lowest about yourself. Were you listening to what you believed were people’s perception of you? Or were you going as far as saying them to yourself? One thing is for certain, it wasn’t God’s voice. A perfect God made you in His image, with more love than you’ll ever understand. If you need more convincing, look at John 3:16. I know you know it. Say it with me. “For God so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whosoever believes in Him, shall not perish, but have eternal life.” You think a God who loves you that much would make you ugly? I don’t think so.
The dictionary defines beauty in three ways:
1: the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit : loveliness
2: a beautiful person or thing; especially : a beautiful woman
3: a particularly graceful, ornamental, or excellent quality
via Merriam-Webster Dictionary
These are the world’s definitions, not God’s. God isn’t wrinkling His nose at your acne or judging your weight. He really doesn’t care. (Not to say He doesn’t care how these things affect your happiness, but as physical attributes alone, not at all.) He wants you to understand that no matter what the world is telling you is beautiful, it’s a lie and nothing compared to the beauty He already gave you.
It took me a long time to grasp this concept, and if I’m being totally honest, I still don’t understand it completely. All I can tell you is once you start to realize you’re already beautiful to the One that matters, you don’t sweat the small stuff nearly as much. So what if your hair looks like an F5 tornado hit it? Your face has a zit the size of a soccer ball right in the middle of your forehead? The world tells you to dwell on those trivialities. God sees everything; the time you opened the door for someone else, the kind words you said to your mother, the perfection of His creation. And He can’t wait for you to see, fully, what He sees everyday.
So what is “beauty”? It’s a perfection found in the soul of an individual, placed there by God Himself. It’s altogether amazing and undefinable. It’s been there since the beginning of your existence, but it won’t manifest itself without your belief in the One who made it. And nothing you can say or do will ever take it away. You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His. You are beautiful.