21 April 2013

Of a Natural Beauty

Just the other day, I pinned my hair up quickly before heading out the door. While hurrying to catch a glimpse of the back, just to be sure all was in place, I snatched an old compact, opened to view the reflection of my reflection and noticed the flesh-colored powder pressed in the bottom, suddenly remembering the feeling of swiping this material over the skin of my face.  It's been two years this month since I first stepped past that drawer, forever cutting the task from my daily routine.

I didn't realize, at the time, my simple motion of rebellion against the lies of my culture, the lies that God's beauty was not enough, would forever change how I saw myself.  

It was just a step.

And sometimes that's all it takes.

At the time I took that small step, made the small decision once a day to not open that drawer and defile my face, it was strange. I looked in the mirror and saw a girl not quite up to par. I didn't match the beautiful pictures I'd previously seen of myself. My lashes were too light, my pores too noticeable, my skin too marred by the past. I didn't feel this unpainted face was the best version of myself, it wasn't normal to be simply me.

Yet, this past week, as I recalled the sensation of powder on my skin, this is now what felt strange. It was almost unimaginable to consider picking up that compact to coat my face with a foreign substance again. It wasn't normal. The walking past of my drawer is no longer a conscious thought - it simply doesn't even register.

Two years later, I see beauty in the mirror - a beauty that comes from no effort of my own, a recognition of God's handiwork. My old way of life has gone and feels strange to myself.

And if He can do this on the outside, how much more can He do this on the inside. 

I long for the day when an angry word feels foreign on my tongue. The thought of lashing out will seem so abnormal. The drawers holding jealousy, bitterness and fear will remain closed as I march past, choosing, instead, the true beauty of a character of Christ.

Because there is beauty in there, a beauty I have too long ignored and covered over.  Lord, let the clothing of myself in your love be the most important part of my daily routine until it's not even a conscious thought, it will simply be me becoming who You have made me to be.

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