I have a friend who looks like the young Bridgette Bardot. No joke. In fact there’ll be people reading this blog who know me in my real life (in which I am fairly boring and don’t actually say that much, but that’s another story) who’ll look at this photo and say “Wow, is that…” although I won’t say her name here, because that would just be awkward. And it’s not. It’s Bridgette Bardot (with plenty of clothes on). But, you who are reading this and know who I’m talking about, you’re getting it too, right? It’s weird being friends with someone who looks so much like a supermodel. I’ve learned to deal with it better over the years as I’ve grown more comfortably into my own skin, and got to know her better as well. I know her well on the inside, and I see right through the outside these days, but early on, when I first met her, I found her beauty confronting.
Have you ever experienced that? Is it just me? I’m pretty sure it’s probably a girl thing, so I do apologise to all the blokes out there reading this who are thinking “what?” but never mind. Ask your wife, or your girlfriend. Or your sister. See what they say. Or go hang out with Pierce Brosnan for a few days and see how it makes you feel. Beauty can be challenging.
Sometimes I feel the same way about being in someone’s beautiful house.
Sure, I just nicked this from Google, but…wow. Sometimes I’ve stood in people’s houses that are this beautiful, and instead of simply appreciating the beauty, I feel out-of-place. Not good enough. Unwelcomed by it’s sheer beauty. (Okay, this is definitely a girl thing, isn’t it? If you’re a guy and you’ve ever felt this way, please let me know!)
Here’s the truth though: I have as much right to a beautiful house as the next person.
Here’s another truth: my Bridgette Bardot supermodel friend doesn’t see herself as beautiful at all.
And another truth: another of my precious friends tells me she sometimes picks up jeans from the rack that are much too large for her, because that’s sometimes the size she sees herself as. And, conversely, I,who used to be skinnier, sometimes pick up jeans that would have fitted me ten years ago.
I look at myself in the mirror every single day. So does my Bridgette Bardot friend. Every single day, yet we still don’t get it.
The ugly truth is this: we lose the ability somehow, somewhere, to see ourselves as God sees us: as fearfully and wonderfully made; as precious and honoured; as beautiful simply because we are made in His image. Yet This. Is. What. We. Are. We are robbed from the truth by beauty magazines, by television, the internet, by the lies we listen to in our own minds. It’s time, for me at least, to acknowledge and grow beyond it.
It’s a new week. Do me a favor, take a minute today to acknowledge yourself as beautiful. Yes you. I’ll do it too. Now come back and tell me how you go.