It is exhausting to fight a war in your head every single day. I tried for so long to disguise my pain. I felt so much guilt behind my shame. I would spend every day criticizing everything about myself from my weight, to the size of clothes I wore, to the wrinkles on my forehead down to not so perfect nail polish on my toes. All this dissatisfaction stems from how I have perceived myself since I was a young girl. I tried to cover up my pain by becoming something that I thought everyone else wanted me to be. All I wanted was to feel beautiful and not what was done or told to me. Even after all these years I still struggle with these thoughts of trying to be this perfect woman. I find myself once again criticizing every ounce of what makes me, me. I have scars seen and unseen from my past and how I got those scars play a huge role in how I have learned to see myself. However every day I am learning to embrace those scars because they truly are what make me beautiful. Yes, scars can be painful. Scars may seem anything but pretty but there is more good found in scars than we realize. The scars that remain from an unkind word or scars left on the heart after an emotional battle give us strength even when we don’t feel strong. The lasting scars of hurtful memories or painful moments give us a heart of compassion and a love that can’t be found anywhere else. Despite the scars from my past, despite how ugly they have made me feel I know my scars both physical and emotional are truly what make my inner and outer beauty shine. I am no longing staying in bondage to those scars but I am setting myself free and using my scars as weapons to succeed.
In today’s society where glamour is instant and false ideas of perfection are easily attained through filters, apps and social media the truth of who we are is no longer valued. Everyone’s highlight reel is a constant misconception that life is perfect and your self-worth is based on your posts, likes, tweets and what is socially pinned. What I have realized is that no matter how hard I try to reach perfection I always pale in measuring up to the world’s beauty mirror and I get distracted and fail to see God’s beauty in me.
For far too long I spent many minutes, hours and days hating what I saw in the mirror. When I looked at my reflection all I could see is my fears, flaws and failures. I am slowly becoming comfortable in my own skin and not giving into the world’s definition of beauty.
When we realize that God sees us through eyes of love we are profoundly healed. When we begin to see others through God’s eyes of love, we bring healing and blessing to them. To be seen and loved, and to absorb the reality of that love, is to know ourselves for who we really are. And to know this is to be freed from self condemnation. To know this is to be made whole. We are made in the image of God. God says we are lovely and beloved, we are His.
When we strive to be everyone else but the person God created, then we are giving control to those things that control our perspectives in life. When we are anchored in the truth of Christ, we give the Holy Spirit control in what matters most in our life. When we start to see the vision that God has for each of us our identity takes on the shape by our Maker and not by the world. That’s an image social media and magazines will never reflect.