Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Beautiful on the Inside

And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us,
And establish the work of our hands for us;
Yes, establish the work of our hands.

Psalm 90:17, New King James Version

When I think of the word, beautiful, I often think about outward appearances. As women, we are inundated with images and ideas of what is beautiful and we can easily fall into the trap of agreeing with the world's view of beauty and not give a second thought about what is beautiful according to God. It's hard not to walk through the checkout line at the grocery store without wishing we were as thin as the celebrity who just had a baby two weeks ago or that we owned those pretty clothes that just don't seem to fit into our Target budget.

Lately, my husband and I have been making a conscious effort to redefine beauty in our house. Yes, we tell our kids that they are beautiful. I believe that's important that they hear that from us, but we spend much more time talking about being beautiful on the inside as opposed to beautiful on the outside. We talk about what it means to live as followers of Christ and how that affects our hearts as well as our actions. Being beautiful on the inside means to treat each other with respect, to always tell the truth, to include others, and to serve those in need.

In reality, we aren't born beautiful on the inside and it doesn't take very long for ugliness to find a home in each of us. The only way we can be beautiful on the inside is to embrace God's gift of grace and keep His Word in our hearts at all times. Even then, we fight the ugliness daily, but Christ's version of beautiful always wins and never ages or decays.

Do my kids fight? Yes. Do my kids lie? Unfortunately, yes sometimes they do. Do they speak poorly of a friend from time to time? Yes, but we use these times to talk about a beauty and love that can only come from God and encourage their outward actions to reflect the love that flows from our lives because of what Christ has done for us.

Lord, thank you for loving us enough to send your Son to take my place. As I raise my children, I pray that you would give us hearts that love you and and find our worth in You. Let your beauty rest on us so that we can be a light in a dark world that so badly needs to know who You are. In Your name we pray. Amen.

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