All beautiful you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you.
Song of Songs 4:7
For the last eight years, my daily “mom uniform” has been jeans, whatever cotton shirt has been on sale at Kohl’s, and a zip-up fleece. I try to jazz things up a bit by mixing and matching my shirts and fleeces, but there’s only so much you can do with that. However, I’m always comfortable, and I always have pockets for the essentials: tissues, a credit card and my cell phone. The bottom line is, it works for me, and my appearance is adequate for the life I lead.
Although I have three pairs of Lee jeans that I rotate, there’s one pair that I think I’ve worn about 156 times over the past year, no lie. They have a high percentage of Lycra, making them incredibly stretchy and comfortable. They’re like the yoga pants of jeans.
Imagine my surprise when I noticed just the other day, for the first time in 156 wears, that the inside front pockets are made from a fabric that has, “You are beautiful,” “You are stunning,” “You are gorgeous,” printed all over it! Isn’t it wonderful that someone in the Lee design department wanted to bolster women up with hidden words of affirmation? That person knew that it’s how we feel on the inside that determines our true beauty. When we connect with someone special, triumph over a problem, or get showered with love and affection, our confidence level goes up. That radiates out and enhances our beauty far more than a good hair day can.
When I run retreats, I put this Scripture passage on the mirror in the bathroom. As the moms are washing their hands, the words I want them to hear God saying to them are “All beautiful you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you.” I want His words to resonate down into their souls so that when they finish reading it, and their eyes travel back up to their own reflection in the mirror, they see themselves as God sees them: truly beautiful and flawless. Because no matter how we look outwardly, no matter what we have done in the past, God’s unconditional love transforms us into perfection.
Every year, on the first of February, I hang envelopes off the backs of my kids’ chairs. On each of the days leading up to Valentines Day I leave little treats and love notes in them. As my kids tumble out of bed and down the stairs to check their envelopes, I don’t see the twisted pajamas or the crazy bed-head they wake with. I also don’t see the mistakes they’ve made or the wrong things they did the day before. All I see is their perfection: the wonder and joy and true beauty in the depth of their souls. God sees us the same way we see our kids.
Additionally, like I do for my kids, God leaves little treats and love tokens everywhere. The dazzling sunsets, the breath-taking spring blossoms, and the lyrical bird songs are all His gifts to us. They’re also more affirmation that when God creates things, He does so with perfection and beauty.
To further get His point across, He gifts us moms with children who say in words what He has been trying to tell us in small daily signs. Tell me your heart doesn’t swell when your child says, “Mommy, you are beautiful” for the first time, or for the hundredth time? The amazing thing is, not only do they say it when we get dressed up, but they say it when we feel dumpy and a mess. It’s because they’re not looking at our outward appearance. They’re looking straight into our hearts, where our true beauty lies.
So the next time you glance at yourself in the mirror and you’re not happy with what you see, stop looking through your own eyes. Instead, see yourself as your kids and God see you. Just like finding the secret messages in the pockets of my jeans made me glow, seeing ourselves through the eyes of God will keep us radiant, no matter what the day holds.
What love notes has God been tucking into the pockets of your life lately?
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