Am I Beautiful?
Am I beautiful? Am I enough? Am I captivating? Am I worthy of love?
Ironic isn’t it. Part of my job is to speak on what authentic beauty is and yet, I grapple with it and ask myself these questions.
For as long as I could remember I placed my identity, my perception of beauty, on a number on a scale I believed that I had to be a certain size in order to be enough; this misplaced identity lead to an eating disorder that I struggled with for a couple of years, because I allowed a number on a scale dictate whether or not I was enough and worthy of love. I fell prey to the lies of what this culture set as the standard for beauty, I took them as truth of who I was.
The Thigh Gap. Big Butt. Eyebrows on Fleek. The list goes on.
We live in a culture today that places these unrealistic beauty standards on us as women. The Thigh Gap. Big Butt. Eyebrows on Fleek. The list goes on. It tells us that we need to reach its level of perfection in order to be enough, in order to be worthy of love. How many of us believe that to be truly captivating and beautiful we need to do all that we can to reach the standards of beauty that’s placed before us. How many of us look in the mirror and don’t like what’s reflecting back at us. The reality is, we will never be enough for our culture, there will always be something wrong with us.
You know what’s funny though?
Our culture today is so afraid of the power we as women possess in our beauty, that it has made it its mission to belittle beauty to just one aspect, our exterior, our bodies. Our culture thrives on us having low self esteem, and body issues. Because ladies, if we knew what true beauty was, if we knew what power authentic beauty possessed, this world, our culture, would be transformed.
You see, my sisters, true beauty, the beauty our hearts ache for cannot be found in the media or in the ways our culture tries to tell us. True beauty comes from when we allow ourselves to become true icons to beauty itself, God.
So how do we begin to reflect this beauty and reject the lies from the culture? Allow me to propose 3 practical ways we can strive for this.
- Virtue: Virtue will carve out and cultivate the beauty we each possess. Virtue is the most attractive thing on earth. Why? Because virtue is a reflection of beauty itself, God. Cultivating virtue will bring to light the beauty we all possess.
- Prayer: I know it sounds cliche, but ladies, if we are struggling to see ourselves truly and fully for who we are then we need to enter into conversation with the One who created us and ask Him to make clear what is blurry. Try praying: My Lord and my God, Help me to see me the way you see me.
- Community: Wasn’t what you were expecting was it? When we foster good, authentic community, it has the ability to remind us of who we are and whose we belong to. In those times that we forget the beauty that we possess, good community can reminds us and challenges us to be more authentic versions of ourselves.
Ladies, take this from someone who doesn’t have it all together and who isn’t perfect in this. But has found healing, and true confidence, these 3 practicals can aid us in breaking free from the lies and build our foundation in the truth.
Know this: You are enough. You are beautiful. You are captivating. You always have been and you always will be.
Ladies, our culture needs the beauty that is woman. Let’s rise up and be a witness to this culture on what authentic beauty is.