Real Beauty

Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30

One of the areas I’ve wrestled with my whole life is wanting to be beautiful

Growing up, I dealt with weight, race, and acne issues which always left me feeling less than.  Somehow I thought if I were less chunky, more white, and had a clearer complexion that somehow I’d be more acceptable.

I’m not sure now whose acceptance I was needing so much. Sometimes I think it was my mom’s. Other times, I realize it was mine. I was really hard on myself, somehow thinking if I were more perfect, I’d be more acceptable. I didn’t realize then that more than fear of others’ rejection, self-rejection was my enemy. I could blame others for putting that mindset in me, but I alone was responsible for accepting & believing those lies.  It was time for me to get free.

As the proverbial “good Christian girl,” I knew I was supposed to crucify that kind of vanity and let it die at the Cross.  The only problem was, I didn’t quite know how.

Then this summer happened.♡

As I took my month long trip traveling up the Pacific Coastal Highway 1 and down Interstate 5, God gave me so much room and space to be the woman my heart desired to be and was created to be. Nobody else was around. Just me and Jesus.

Some days I felt so free and beautiful next to the ocean. Other days, I found myself at my worst, like the time I told a rude, selfish fisherman he didn’t have to act like a jerk.

In both ocassions, I was no longer trying to just be “nice” or get anyone’s approval. I was just being me- the good me, and the me Jesus so desperately needs to change!  I found grace in both places. It felt beautiful and freeing. God loved me. I was okay!

I experienced God’s grace this summer in such a way that made me see HIS love and acceptance.  Because of His steadfast grace and complete acceptance, I found myself discovering what it means to feel beautiful from the inside out.

Real beauty embraces Christ’s acceptance and grace and allows His Spirit to permeate throughout every area of our lives. It’s having our identities secure in Christ.

My healing did not come from self-acceptance.  It came from deeply understanding Christ’s acceptance of me.  I realized if Jesus loves me just as I am, then maybe just maybe, I am okay & free to be the person God created me to be!!!

Sure enough, I’ve been finding it’s a beautiful way to live!

CHRIST in me, hope of glory! ♡

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