Everything about this photo makes me smile. This hair color is simply divine and uniquely rich; if only I had the stomach to try such an endeavor. A plum cardigan hides her shoulders. A statement, aqua ring dresses her curled finger and a colorful scarf disguises the absence of a necklace. I see a soft expression accompanied by a thoughtful stare. No doubt this picture was staged, but the effect that it takes on the observers is undeniable. Beautiful. A lot of people say that "beauty is in the eyes of the beholder." For much time I did not fully understand the weight of this statement. In short, you decide what is beautiful. Making the thought of strangers count as if they were a lifeline, many of us search for approval by standards of what other people consider acceptable or pretty. The statement above removes the power from anyone other than yourself.
The saying that many people quickly pass over is "beauty is only skin-deep." Often times the truth of this gets pushed aside. This beauty is the one that is bought in a store, salon, or doctor's office. Time and money is spent on the alteration of the original treasure that was received with a first breath.
Imagine a wedding day. A bride has spent months pouring her life into details and design. Her dreams have been taking shape just as imagined. One of the most important details of this day is the pure white dress that the bride will wear as she takes her confident steps toward her best friend and groom. As the clock ticks toward the final minutes, she goes to get her dress. Unzipping the bag, her breath catches in her chest as she beholds the awful sight. It is all wrong. Her dress was long; this dress was short. Her dress had detail of lace; this dress was covered in sequins. A most valued piece of the perfect day and it was ruined.
The story is of a dress. If material and thread means that much to a woman, how much more do us children mean to our creator. Just wishing that we could be something we are not is like destroying the wedding dress that is not our own. We were imagined, designed, and stitched; carefully each piece was placed to form the perfect result. Peace replaces worry when settling reaches the heart. In 1 Samuel we are told that "man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart." A beautiful heart defeats a pretty face.
As much as I adore the sweet and pretty things in life, they will pass away. The scarf will become old news and the ring will be forgotten in a cluttered jewelry box. Hair color shall fade and wrinkles will crawl across the young face. Maybe the young lady is as gorgeous inside as this photo depicts her appearance; beauty that matters.
Picture found at A Beautiful Mess.
Currently Listening: "Sailboats" by Brooke Fraser