Today some of my author friends banded together to host a Face.Me blog tour where they shared photos of themselves without makeup in an effort to promote true beauty. Lean in, friends, because I’m going to have a very honest moment with you. Ready? When I saw they were doing this and making a big deal about showing their faces without makeup I rolled my eyes. Yes. I’m a sinner. There’s proof.
However, many of those posting were close friends of mine and I wanted to see what they would blog about. I knew their posts would be insightful, but what I found blew me away. Man, was I humbled and challenged. I found myself nodding along. I found myself tearing up. And I found myself praying.
Let the King be enthralled by your beauty;
My original issue with the Face.Me challenge was that I can count on one hand (without using all my fingers) the number of days in my entire life that I’ve worn makeup. I have never tried figuring out how to wear the stuff because—frankly—I accepted the fact a long time ago that beauty is far out of my reach. No amount of makeup will turn this mug into a model, so what was the point?
I distinctly remember at grade school age being told that it was a shame I wasn’t pretty like my sisters. Then when it came time to have crushes on boys, the guys I liked always fell for my beautiful best friend(s). Every. Single. Time. See, I have this ongoing issue where I always make friends with beautiful people therefore casting me in the role as wingman for my entire life. This was my truth no matter what my setting—at school, in clubs, and at summer camp. Know how I became friends with my husband? He had a crush on my gorgeous college roommate. True story.
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I’ve worn many labels in my life. I have been smart. Clever. Strong. Funny. Driven. Independent. Tough. A tomboy. Even cute.
But beauty was never a label for me. Even on my wedding day (one of the few times I’ve worn makeup), I didn’t feel beautiful. I felt loved. So incredibly loved. And special. But not beautiful. I couldn’t have. Because I am not beautiful.
Let’s go back to me rolling my eyes when I first heard about the challenge. At the time I would have told you that I was eye rolling because I didn’t understand what the big deal was. I go without makeup every day and the world keeps right on spinning. You know?
However, as I read the heartfelt words of my friends I realized that I don’t wear makeup because I feel beautiful without it, but because I believe—for me—beauty is unattainable, even with it. So what’s the point? Besides, to this day, whenever I try to wear makeup I think I look silly. Like a little kid playing dress up.
He will rejoice over you with singing
Almost two years ago my daughter was born. Every single day since, my husband and I watch her and look at each other to say, “she’s so beautiful!” We catch ourselves doing this constantly. Even when she’s covered in mud or sporting truly impressive bed head. We both believe she’s the most beautiful little girl on earth. Know what? It has nothing to do with her outward appearance. She’s beautiful because of her curious and adventurous spirit. Because she sees beauty and wonder in everything. And most of all, because she’s ours.
God feels that way about me. About you. About us.
That stopped me in my tracks.
To God: I. Am. Beautiful. The girl who no one has ever described that way. Who doesn’t believe that label will ever be for me. God labeled me beautiful the day He created me and He’s been there ever since saying, “See her? That’s my daughter. Isn’t she beautiful?”
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord
So, without further ado, here is my Face.Me picture. Snapped quickly, in one shot, with no filter and no make-up. My hair is still wet from the shower. You can see the extra weight I haven’t lost since having my daughter. And the place on my bottom lip that pulls weird because I have no feeling there from nerve damage when my jaw was broken (this is why I can’t ever wear lipstick!). When my daughter sees this face she cries “mama!” in joy and runs into my arms. This is the face my husband sees when he whispers he loves me. The one that the God of the universe is looking upon right now as He smiles, saying, “That one’s mine. Isn’t she beautiful?”
Below are some of the authors who blogged about Face.Me and their words really touched me. These are not all the authors involved in the blog tour, but if you click on one of the links, each of those authors have a list of all the blogs involved on their post.
You are loved. And you are beautiful.