by Melanie Lloyd, Proven Way Member
Do you remember Glamour Shots? On my journey of falling in love with Jesus, one of the things that attracted me to Him was that He didn’t have Glamour Shots expectations of me. You know – that same puffy dress, teased hair, and glittery costume jewelry that almost every girl in every portrait wore. Jesus never asks me to conform to the world’s definition of anything in order to be adored and used by Him. Instead, He wants me to be uniquely me, the way He designed me.
My continual discovery of who God made me to be, my God-given purpose, and my growth into that woman, has involved the softening of edges and shedding of layers that He never intended for me. Let’s be honest, becoming a mature image bearer and servant of God is more challenging than getting dolled up and smiling for the camera. In contrast to the world, Jesus’ makeover is lasting and results in incredible freedom, joy, and abundant fruit.
Some of my “beauty secrets” are:
- Always choose grace. My bent is toward justice and pride. Being misjudged makes my stomach queasy. However, we can’t pursue our own justice and extend His grace simultaneously. The former cuts us off from Him; the latter connects us to His inexhaustible supplies.
- Rest in God’s non-linear path and His timing that doesn’t always seem logical. Our God, who is bigger than we can understand, prepared good works for us to do before the beginning of time. Let that sink in. Our goal is to obey even when we don’t have everything figured out. God promises to be at our front leading us and at our back protecting us. He is enough.
- Cultivate friendships with women who passionately love the Lord. Friends who graciously remind us of truth, prayerfully battle alongside us, confirm our path, and cheer us on are essential on this journey.
- Remember that love is not always soft and fluffy, though it always considers others first. Sometimes God’s call to faithfully love others looks like taking a step back or gently confronting a fellow believer. If there’s any doubt that loving others stretches us, then read the book of Hosea in the Bible.
- Know that as we continually trust God more and more, circumstances don’t have to make sense for us to praise Him. Trust frees us to be awed by Who He is and His provision through unexpected conversations, encouraging words, transformations witnessed, and new fruit in our life.
True beauty and purpose come from running after Jesus. He makes us uniquely attractive by reflecting Himself in us and through us. As His beloved, Jesus presents us to God without blemish or accusation. How much more glamorous does it get?
But Christ has brought you back to God by His death on the cross. In this way, Christ can bring you to God, holy and pure and without blame. (Colossians 1:22, NLT)