A few weeks ago, my pastor shared a sermon called "I'm Not Attractive Enough." He asked me to speak to the women (and the men so they could better understand their women) about our appearances and how we were created in God's image. For the interview, we did a video with 12 different women from our church and asked them questions about what they see when they look in the mirror. The ages ranged from seven to seventy-five and I just loved how honest their answers were.
To watch my interview and the video from the sermon, click here and fast forward to 37:50 in the sermon.
When I think about myself and my appearances, I am my own worst critic. I'm sure many of you are too. Women are our own worst critics because we are dealing with our expectations and our imperfections.
When it comes to expectations, we battle what we expect ourselves to look like and also what others around us expect us to look like. My pastor talked a lot about family and how much of our thoughts about ourselves are passed down from our family members. Maybe your mom told you that she didn't like your nose and now all you see in the mirror is your ugly nose. Also, when we deal with our society, we feel this certain expectation to keep up with the current trends and look just as good as those around us.
When we think about the expectations we have of ourselves, I believe most of us try hard to look good. That's why we go to the gym, get our hair done, and pick out nice clothes to wear. Because there is some truth about if you look good, you feel good. But, for some twisted reason, even the most beautiful women in the world struggle with their appearances. This is because we focus on our imperfections.
Women are on a pursuit of perfection. But, as hard as we try, we get caught in a comparison trap. When this happens we analyze those around us and then we view our own appearances with negative thoughts. Jennifer Rothschild has a Bible study called <em>Me, Myself, and Lies> (we are studying this on Wednesday nights at six at Covenant) and in this study she talks about how we need to have a thought closet makeover and not just see our own imperfections. Here's what some women in my church, ranging from seven to seventy-five had to say about this issue:
Their answers are honest and true. We have to transform our thoughts and get back to believing that we are pretty and God loves us. Because when we focus on those simple truths, we stop comparing and we can see more than our imperfections.
We have to shift our perception of ourselves from ideal to real.
In Exodus, Moses is doubting what God is calling him to do. When he shares his hesitations with God, his response to Moses is "Tell the people I AM sent you." As we think about not feeling attractive enough, we have to rest in God's assurance when he tells us I AM enough.
Look at yourself in the mirror today. You will probably still see the wrinkles, the age, the weight. But look past those things and tell yourself "I am created in God's image. God loves ME."
Now go, and believe that you are enough.
Till next time, let your light shine!