Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mirror, Mirror, On The Wall...

There's nothing quite like a birthday to signal the passage of time. This past week, my husband bolstered my self-confidence by leaving a few candles off my cake, and making sure that twelve of them were 'princess' candles, making me feel extra special! Amazing how the years can fly and yet I still feel like I'm in my twenties...okay, maybe thirties!

Am I the only one who turns a critical eye to the mirror almost daily, scanning my face for additional fine lines and wrinkles, and other sure signs of aging? I remember our recent trip down to Florida to visit our daughter at college. After a late dinner and a fitful night of sleep, I approached the bathroom mirror cautiously. Yikes! When had I developed such prominent circles under my eyes? And where had THOSE fine lines come from? There had to be a logical explanation - and the fact that I was getting older certainly couldn't be one of them! I was convinced it had to be the lighting in the bathroom.

An entire industry has evolved, touting products guaranteed to slow down the aging process. Creams, lotions, and make-up, all designed to restore skin to its former youthfulness. One look in my cabinets and I realize I've bought into the advertiser's claims. There's a difference between taking care of myself, and letting my appearance become an obsession. As the years have passed, I have to admit that I've found myself tripped up by the false belief that somehow my value is tied to how I look. Can anyone relate?

Society would have me believe that what's on the outside matters most. God's Word tells me something different. When addressing women, the Apostle Peter had this to say, "Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price," (1 Peter 3:3-4). Outer beauty may fade over time, but inner beauty can continue to grow. It's a person's inner beauty that is most valuable in God's economy.

Take a careful look at the characteristics of the lady described by the book of Proverbs as the 'virtuous woman.' Several admirable qualities are clearly spelled out: she is faithful to her husband, takes care of her household, works willingly, is generous, speaks wisely, is kind (Proverbs 31:10-31). Did you notice her physical appearance? No? That's because it's not mentioned. What a good reminder! Beauty isn't about what's on the outside, it's about what's on the inside. This woman's beauty comes entirely from her character. Her value is said to be far above rubies!

To all my female friends out there - are you looking in the mirror to determine your self-worth? Instead, look to the truth of God's Word, "... for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart," (1 Samuel 16:7b).

How do you determine your self-worth? Focus on developing your inner beauty, knowing that you're priceless in the eyes of your Heavenly Father!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for reminding me that I'm precious and highly valuable to You. Help me not to focus on outer appearance, but to cultivate the qualities of inner beauty. Thank You for the truth of Your Word. In Jesus' name, Amen.


  1. Hi Maria,
    I saw a picture my daughter took of me the other day and it is etched in my mind--it made me want to cry about how frumpy I look. So I decided to get into shape better but as I work out, I find that I feel better on the inside too --not from dropping a few pounds but from the energy and reduced stress levels. I would like to think that I am valued for who I am to others and not because of my wrinkles and extra skin:)

  2. Hi Maria! I'm one of your new followers. I love this post! It is truly amazing how the world focuses on a woman's outer beauty when the only important thing (that really matters) is the inside beauty that our Father sees. Be blessed always!

  3. Hi Maria -

    Like most women, I use the moisturizers and creams to help slow the signs of aging. My mom always says she may be old on the outside, but she's 18 on the inside.

    It's all about seeing ourselves as He sees us.

    Susan :)

  4. Terri - I'm know God values you for who you are - His unique creation! And I'm sure your family and friends do as well! You're so right about exercise! The endorphins that are released DO help reduce stress and help generate a sense of well-being. Isn't God good?! Have a wonderful weekend, my friend! :)

  5. Cookie - Welcome! I'm always honored when people stop by! Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement! God bless you as you continue to cultivate inner beauty - that which truly matters! Have a great weekend!

  6. Susan - I'm with you on the moisturizers and creams! Sounds like our Moms have been comparing notes! It's always encouraging to see older women staying involved in life and using the gifts God's given them to the full! Thanks for repeating the truth: "It's all about seeing ourselves as He sees us!" Have a beautiful weekend, my friend! :)