Julia and I are exploring the meaning of Beauty, intersecting Beauty with the word of God, and letting Beauty live in our lives. Inspired by a joint feeling of just not measuring up in the beauty category, we’re tackling some hard questions:
- What is Beauty? And does it reside in me?
- And when my husband says that I’m beautiful, how can I receive those words as truth in a culture that says the opposite?
- What am I going to teach my daughters about Beauty?
- And most importantly, what does the Word of God say about Beauty?
Join us as we converse about a topic that touches the heart of all women.
As I was preparing to write my response, I reread your letter. Tears pricked my eyes as I read through your scars: your sister teasing you, your friends abandoning you when you were 10–ugh! I ache that you had to endure that.
We all have them. Scars.
I bet every woman reading this could share deep, painful, scars from her youth. I know I can.
I wrote before about physical scars. But these scars, emotional scars, they run deeper.
Scars. Even the word is ugly, isn’t it?
Scars become part of us.
We carry them around.
They are part of what makes us who we are.
And, for better or worse, scars influence the way we parent our daughters.
Before Brad and I knew the gender of our girls, I remember thinking:
I’m not sure I can mother girls. (I think I might have even prayed for boys).
I have three sisters–I know girls, yet I wasn’t sure I wanted one of my own. My reason?
Fear that I would irrevocably screw up a girl (or two) with my “issues”, my scars.
I think the heavens laughed at me.
Clearly, God had different plans, as my arms and heart are full with two 20 pound lovelies.
It strikes me as I type this–I haven’t really been gripped with that fear lately. A huge blessing, to be sure.
I’ve kept a journal for my girls since before they were born. I noticed, as I read back through it today, I’ve been battling fear since the second I found out I was pregnant–I wrote about it often. This was the verse I put on the first page each of their journals:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:6-8
Oh my goodness, do you see?!
Anyone who reads our blogs, knows that you and I pour out our thanks weekly.
It’s just as Ann’s book says: thanksgiving and fear cannot co-mingle!
The thanksgiving brings peace–a peace that me and my scarred, broken self cannot understand, but it’s there!
Peace that, daily, allows me to enjoy the gift of my girls, rather than living gripped with the fear of messing them up.
Of course, I can’t just wallow in peace without action. The gift of my peace comes a responsibility to my daughters teach and model True Beauty for them.
The rich word, pregnant with meaning, that you and I emailed about last week sums up much of what we must teach. Modesty.
Modesty in dress. Modesty in speech. Modesty in behavior.