The Overflow

living in the overflow of God's goodness through every season

Overcoming the Mirror

BeautyMelissa NeuverthComment
 Photo Credit: Melissa Neuverth

Photo Credit: Melissa Neuverth

Overcoming self-image is a common struggle for young women of all ages. We live in a body conscious world full of products that promise, “This will make you beautiful. It’s all you need”. Their lies prick our minds at a very young age and carry throughout adulthood. In the passing generations, society has portrayed many standards that have given us a poor image of what is acceptable and beautiful. With these messages telling us who we should be, we end up convincing ourselves that we have not and may not reach the expectations that seem to be so strongly required. Racked by negative experiences or increasing insecurities, we compare and compete with others around us; so easily forgetting we are all created equally beautiful in the eyes of our Father. 

We all have heard and know deep in our hearts that makeup is not the thing that makes a woman beautiful, perfect hair does not produce good character, 100 pounds on the scale is not the only healthy weight, and her closet does not have to be filled with the most expensive outfits; but we get caught up in telling ourselves, “wear this”, “cover that”, “lose weight”, “be flawless” and “be her,” that we find ourselves often twisting our thoughts to believing that beauty is something we don’t currently have, but must create. We try to “be ourselves and create beauty” but let us not so easily forgot that true beauty is not even in our physical image, but within our heart.

When we are focused on ourselves, ugly thoughts form the lies that our minds dwell on. If we were to calculate the hours spent over-thinking about our appearance, judging ourselves, and living out these lies it would surprise us with how many minutes, days, and even years add up of time spent with our eyes on the mirror. Think of all the moments in life wasted, trying to reach perfection in our eyes and failing to realize what God has created is already perfect in His eyes. Our precious time that should be spent within the love of God and joy of His satisfaction instead of grappling for something that won’t be worth the effort. That’s why stepping in the Truth of God’s Word is so important. We need to bask in His constant love and acceptance. We have to continually seek the Lord and what He thinks of us rather than what we think of ourselves, because in knowing who He is, we will come to know the precious way He sees us. We are valuable; and God has made us to be His masterpieces. He doesn't ask us to mask or change His work, but to embrace it the way He fashioned. Do we honestly think we can make ourselves more beautiful than the Ultimate Creator has made us to be? We try to, but our strivings are in vain if they attempting to prove we are better off being someone God didn’t make us to be. I’m not saying that being stylish and enhancing your beauty are sinful things, but what are your intentions? Are you hiding behind a mask of makeup because you don’t believe you’re pretty? Are you buying expensive clothing out of a desire to impress your friends?

It’s not just a battle of physical image; the battle lies in our heart. These common battles of the woman's’ mind are the dangerous distractions we need to avoid. When we act on the lies of beauty, we will set ourselves up for destruction. 1 Samuel 16:7b it states, "The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart". If we focus more on our outward appearance rather than our heart, our worth will start to feel like something we have to earn and make up. We can try and add on to our physical beauty, but God doesn’t ask for more. He asks that we respect the body He has given us and live more concerned with the beauty of our hearts. In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 it says, "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?  You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body”.  

True beauty is found in the Lord's transformation of our heart. My last quote of encouragement comes from Charles Spurgeon as he writes, “If any soul has any such beauty...Christ has endowed that beloved soul with all its wealth of charms, for in ourselves we are deformed and defiled!...There is no beauty in any of us but what our Lord has worked in us." Rather than running ourselves over with the destructive lies of this self-centered world, let's take comfort in the truths that He has given us. I encourage you to press on to find peace in the unfaltering Truths we have in Jesus; it's only then that we will see ourselves as confident and beautiful in the mirror. When we are finding contentment in the One who gives the Truth, we will behold a true confidence and joy that only can be found in Christ.