“She is closed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future” Proverbs 31:25
Let me tell you the reasons why I love to call you beautiful. I believe this word is underrated and is not used enough although I personally probably overuse it. You see each and every person was created and molded into a unique human being. I like the word beautiful because it does not only reflect your outside looks but is the encompassing word that describes every ounce of yourself from inside to the outside.
I remember sitting in my Christian Thought lecture class in University and hearing the professor talk about “Imago Dei” and what it means. Imago Dei means literally the image of God. Many people know of the verse found in Genesis 1:27 that says “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image God he created them, male and female he created them.” I too have read this verse many times without much thought of what it means. I just had the approach of “oh that’s cool we all look like God in some weird sense even though humans come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, ethnicities, and looks” type of deal. But as my professor pointed out in this lecture, it’s not of our looks that necessarily makes us created in the image of God but rather our CHARACTER. We were made in God’s likeness. We know that God is all loving, merciful, forgiving, wonderful, wise, and all things good, the list goes on and on. And the most beautiful part of it all is that we were made in His image.
So what does that mean for us? It means that even when the world says we’re ugly, we’re not good enough, we need to change ourselves in every way possible in order to be loved and accepted by others, we are actually beautiful without all that stuff. Now I’ll admit some days I feel more beautiful than others. Some days I spend extra care to do my makeup just right and put together a cute outfit. I enjoy this very much. Some days I see every flaw in the mirror magnified by 100%. And inside I can also feel crappy because I didn’t meet mine or someone else’s expectations. I did something wrong and now I feel guilty and stupid so it also carries onto my face. I’m a human with emotions, mistakes, and living life just learning day by day. But none of this defines my beauty. My beauty is found in the fact that the most creative Being in the world who is God decided to create me in a unique and special manner. Giving me a character created in his image.
The good news is that each and every human being was created by God in His image and is loved deeper than we could ever fathom in this lifetime.
So when I started to send my youth update texts to our church members by starting most of my messages with “Hello beautiful people! Yadda yadda yadda..” I originally wanted to be unique, cute, and funny in my manner. To bring people a little giggle even if it was met with rolled eyes. But after reflecting on the lecture of Imago Dei, I realized the real reason why I loved to say beautiful all the time. I believed that the people I was sending this to were beautiful inside and out.
This is where I am even feeling that I am getting a bit too cheesy and I’m not a huge fan of cheese (;. But we live in a world where we are bombarded with images and advertisements all the time. We are constantly getting ambushed with promises to be more attractive if we just did this new diet and exercise, wore this clothing, tried this new product. That’s all fine and dandy but we shouldn’t be utterly consumed by this. Because guess what, by the world’s standard’s we will NEVER be beautiful enough. But by God’s standard’s we were already made in his image and we are accepted and enough.
I want to conclude by saying that I love makeup, fashion, and shopping. I like to change my look around a lot too. I enjoy it and there is nothing wrong with that. But I have to remind myself that while I am working on my outside appearance I also need to work on my heart. Because when my heart is beautiful and loving then the rest of good flows out too. And when I have a loving heart and love others just as Jesus loved me, well now that’s really beautiful.