Moms, whether working or stay at home, and women, do you know you are beautiful? Most of us say no. I say no a lot, too. Why just today I was shopping and trying things on for an upcoming women’s luau at our church, and I didn’t see beauty in the mirror. Instead I saw skin that needs a tan, jiggly arms, a baby gut, and flabby legs. I didn’t see beauty, and then I told my friend about it. And we talked about eating better and going on a diet and working out and the list goes on and on. But do you really believe you are beautiful?
I know what you see. I see it a lot of days. The hair that goes unbrushed…and sometimes the teeth for that matter being a SAHM mom. Now don’t go getting all grossed out on me. You women who are SAHMs, you know there have been at least a few days where your teeth went unbrushed….and I am an orthodontist’s daughter. You see the days when you go without a shower, waking and going to sleep in the same clothes without changing into something else. Probably dark circles under your eyes if you have young children. Fingernails that are uneven and probably dirty, if you have young children. The gray hairs in the once single colored hair that adorns your head. A few stray course hairs growing on your chin. LOL. Joel calls them my goat hairs. I do my best to remind myself to pluck them since thank God, they are white and you can’t see them! We are often our own worst critic, and so I imagine you see every flaw you have and probably invent a few that no one else sees.
But I think the biggest flaws we see are probably in who we are at our core. We don’t believe there is beauty in us as a person. We see our failures, our mistakes, our ways we could be better wives, mothers, friends, daughters, etc. We wonder not only are we lovely on the outside, but is there beauty inside us? And can other people see it? We long for it to be seen. For just one person to notice, but we are afraid. And so we hide.
We hide behind makeup, our humor (this is so me), angry silences, and punishing withdrawals. And why do we hide? We hide to protect ourselves, to be safe because we know deep down people have hurt us and we have hurt others and we want no more rejection. So we hide and not only do we hide from people, but we hide from God. The only being that can truly heal our desperate and broken hearts.
Now, lest you think I came up with this list on my own, please let me give credit where it is due. I got this list from the book Captivating by John and Stasi Eldridge. It’s great. It’s like reading my life written down on paper by someone I don’t even know. But they see me. They know me. They get me. How is that? I am unique. And I am unique, but they hit the nail on the head when they said that God created us in order to unveil our beauty, inwardly and outwardly.
So we hide. And we do. I don’t think I do, but I do. I hide when I am afraid to relish in another woman’s beauty or ability because I am afraid it will limit my own. I hide when I am afraid to rejoice with a friend over a victory because I am looking for my own. I hide when I am afraid to share my fears and faults and shortcomings because I don’t want to be looked down upon. I hide when I am afraid to play with my own daughter because I think I am not good enough as a mom. I hide behind my cleaning because what if I am not good enough at this mothering thing and all I am really good at is cooking and cleaning. I hide from my own child sometimes. We hide, and when we hide, the world loses something precious that only we can give. Everyone loses when we hide, but hiding feels safe. Exposure and authenticity is scary and risky and what if we are rejected. But so many people lose when we hide…our kids, our husbands, our friends, our family, our acquaintances. Everyone loses…especially me.
The person my hiding hurts the most is me. It doesn’t protect me. It makes my world smaller, and it makes me believe that everyone, including God, is waiting for me to mess up. And guess what? No one is. Especially God. He loves you, and He cares about every part of your life. And guess what else? Most of the people that you call family and friends, they want to see you shine and show off your beauty.
God created beauty in women. He wanted to show off the crown of His creation. He did that by creating man and woman, and while both show His majesty, it was woman that was created to demonstrate beauty in her physical and spiritual form. Case in point (used in the book, Captivating…not my own description), how often do you see a nude form of the mail body painted or sculpted by an artist? Well, you don’t see that often. Why? Because the form of a man was not meant to show beauty. The female body was made for that. Man has a different purpose.
So, moms and women, come out from your hiding. There is beauty in you, inwardly and outwardly. Don’t let the people you LOVE the most miss out on the beauty in you. Play with your kids. Share in your friends victories. Tell another woman she is beautiful. Open up to others about your shortcomings. Seek out your husband sexually. Share encouragement and what you are learning with others. Do something that scares you. Stop hiding. If we stop hiding at home with our husbands and children and families, then we will also begin to stop hiding with friends and acquaintances, so that more people don’t miss out on the beauty that only you can offer. You are beautiful!