In the past few months, I have thinking about value. Well, actually, it started out more in the realm of beauty and femininity. While I was in South Africa, I attended a women’s function and ended up being the worst-dressed female there. Egad, I had no idea that putting on my cleanest jeans and my t-shirt with the nicest logo and spraying on some smelly substance would not even come close to the power suit and cashmere sweater my host answered the door in. Oops! So it was not a total surprise when during the meeting some well-meaning lady began to pray for me that I would find my true beauty and not hate myself every time I looked in the mirror, feeling unworthy and un-beautiful. Okay. I didn’t really feel that way but was willing to take a look inside my heart and see what could be improved, so I asked God to teach me about beauty. And as I talked to some friends about it, yes, it did seem that I could improve in the area of enhancing my beauty and taking a little more care with my appearance. So we went shopping and tried on skirts and fitted pink tops (please, let me go back to the sports section!!!!), I visited a Mary Kay lady and had a make-up session and even bought mascara, and I took a close look at myself in the mirror and realized that no, I did not like everything I saw.
So I took a visit to the drugstore and bought some products guaranteed to make me look ten years younger after the first application - a miracle in a bottle! So the creams and lotions and scrubs stood watch on my dresser as I started a regiment of uncovering the new improved and much more beautiful and dare I say, scintillating me. One week later I was far from glowing – I was horrified. The closer I looked in the mirror, the worse my appearance seemed as some of the lotions caused my skin to react in a negative way. The salvation of my youth was fading quickly. That night I had a dream that the left side of my face started to slide downward and drooped onto on my neck. It was a nightmare. I woke up depressed and unbeautiful. After a few hours of moping around the house avoiding every mirror, I threw myself on the bed and asked God what was going on – I thought he wanted me to explore the uncovering of my beauty and making the most of what he gave me. Why was it backfiring?
And he told me one thing quite plainly. If I put my trust in anything else other than him, it will turn to death in front of my eyes. He is my beauty, my vitality, my youth, my maturity, my attractiveness, my biggest fan and my most jealous lover. Our society places a high value on outward beauty and youth, but both of these are quicksand in the desert of searching for lasting worth. Value is a gift - it is not something you work for or earn, it is given by the one who will pay the most for you and that one is God - he gave what was dearest to him in order to give us true life. God loves me. That gives me value. The more I keep my eyes on him the more I will begin to look like him and that will attract more people to me than perfect skin and teeth. And yes, there is a pink article of clothing in my closet now.