I want to be beautiful…for my future husband and for God. So when God called me this year into being a eunuch for Him for seven years I have been really struggling with something…with my desire to be beautiful for my husband. I will have lost all of my “most beautiful years” according to the world’s standard of beauty and aging before I even marry the man that the Lord has destined for me to marry….and my heart is truly broken over this loss of my “most beautiful years”. I am asking the Lord for me to still be so beautiful for my husband when I become his and for me to not follow the “normal” aging process of this day and age. When the Lord decides it is time for my husband and I to become one I want to just take my husband’s breathe away! I want to be a gift for my husband. A gift of beauty not only in my mind and heart but with my body too! I feel like this desire for our husband as women, to be beautiful for them, is from God. Marriage is a supposed to be a picture of Christ and the church. We are waiting for our Bridegroom (Jesus) to return and in the meantime God is sanctifying us or making us beautiful. My deep desire to be beautiful for my husband I feel like is a picture of this as well.
When I first voiced my brokenness over this to God, months ago, He brought me to 1 Peter 3 which talks about true beauty being in the conduct of a wife rather than her appearance:
“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands.” I Peter 3:3-5
No matter how hard I fight it someday I will not be as physically beautiful as I am today, although I will be doing everything within my might to preserve my physical beauty for my husband for as long as I can! However, true beauty is most certainly in the heart. I could be breathtaking externally and repulsive internally. I want to first and foremost be beautiful in my heart which is a beauty that will never fade.
Still, as I struggle with my heart’s desire to be physically beautiful as well God has been telling me something. He has been telling me I am beautiful! My heart so deeply desires to be beautiful for my husband, but right now I do not have a husband…but I do have God and He is my stand-in husband during this time of singleness. Several times in the Old Testament God refers to Himself as being a husband to His people. Whether you are single or not, if you have a relationship with God, rest assured He wants to have a tender, intimate relationship with you and He wants to make you beautiful with His Spirit and with His word.
I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.” Isaiah 61:10
God telling me I am beautiful has been restorative because for the last few years I have felt anything but beautiful. I have felt violated and stripped. I literally felt physically ugly. Finding out how fungus overgrowth had led to a body that was not fertile made me feel so gross physically inside too, that plus the extremely limited diet which led to hypothyroidism and fatigue, limited time for self-care and more things than I’d like to remember…I just felt ugly. I felt gross…and I felt stripped. The journey had revealed to me how I couldn’t eat bread, I couldn’t eat potatoes, I couldn’t eat sugar without breaking out in acne, experience extremely painful periods and not being able to have babies. My cultural heritage felt stripped away as I had to accept the fact that I might never eat a tamale ever again, or indulge in a sopapilla. I felt like the last part of my culture was being stripped away as I had left home years ago and no longer was physically present where mariachi music can be found on the airways or where I hear my dad speaking in Spanish even though I don’t really understand much of what he is saying to me. I just felt stripped. I had stopped wearing makeup because I didn’t want to get anything into my body that could somehow affect my son’s milk since he was so extremely sensitive. I stopped wearing my contacts because I was up around the clock pumping and making food from scratch. I just stopped…I stopped feeling beautiful. I was feverishly fighting for my son and beauty didn’t really have a place in my life. Other emotionally draining situations in my life further destroyed any sense of beauty that I had left. I felt like nothing but God was left for me to stand on, He was my Rock and my Fortress, but I felt stripped of everything but my Rock and I felt like there was no hope or reason for ever trying to be beautiful physically ever again.
Have you ever felt that way?
Our God can restore what has been taken from You. He can’t turn back time, but He can restore our sense of beauty. Zephaniah 3:17 says that God sings over us with loud singing and quiets us with His love. Let Him quiet you today with His love and let Him tell you that you are beautiful. We must receive this from Him. We can either keep our walls of lies up saying there is no reason to even try to be beautiful anymore or we can listen to our Bridegroom’s love song.
“The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. Zephaniah 3:17
Recently a friend came over for lunch and on the way she bought the cutest little bouquet of flowers for me with a note that read “Just a reminder of how beautiful you are!”. This was so encouraging. Just like God sings over us with His love we can “sing” over one another with compliments of love too. I have been ministered to with compliments recently and it has been amazing how restorative they are. Compliments from friends, from fellow church members and even from complete strangers! Yesterday at Goodwill I was at the checkout and the cashier told me how beautiful my hair was. This was so nice of her, and timely because I had seen a picture of a friend’s daughter on Facebook whose hair had been professionally done and really was so beautiful. I had started to feel like my naturally wavy hair wasn’t all that great and then this cashier just genuinely told me what she was thinking in her mind. I think we need to start doing more of that. If we think another lady’s hair or face or outfit or whatever looks nice, tell her! I think we assume that since we can see how beautiful she is that she must be aware of it herself, but this is not always true!
I recently went on a trip to Alaska. While we were there we went to church. I had started attending this church when my son was three months old and we were literally just trying to survive as my son struggled to eat amongst many other issues. We had left Alaska in January, still in the midst of trying times. When we walked in, running late unfortunately, the man, my senior, that always stands next to the door and greets people exclaimed “you look…beautiful!”. He said it with such a genuine beautiful heart, it was not weird at all…and it was almost like he blurted it out before he could stop himself, he emphasized the word beautiful, letting it linger for a moment on his lips – like a reaction more than a thought. My heart was deeply encouraged by his brotherly affection. During that same trip a dear friend of mine took a moment to tell me how beautiful I am as we hung out in her kitchen and a week later as I sat on my therapist’s couch my therapist told me how beautiful I am and I could tell she was heart-felt in her expression as well. As I went to the car after therapy that day I sat there for a moment and thanked God for these people who took a moment to tell me how beautiful I am. As I drove away from my therapist’s work that day, feeling beautifully encouraged and beautifully restored a song came on the Christian radio station saying “you are beautiful” over and over again. I felt like God was telling me He finds me to be beautiful too, just like that man at church and just like my therapist. I paused and I took a picture at the stop light, but I’m not going to share that picture here because that picture, that specific moment was between me and God. I don’t have to tell people which picture of me that was. I don’t have to herald it as proof of the moment. God and I have intimate moments, where He can tell me I am beautiful and it means the world to me but that moment doesn’t belong to the world. It belongs to me and Him.
I have actually felt convicted about this as I have take a few selfies where I felt I looked extra-beautiful in that moment and then posted them as my public profile picture. I just felt like in particular a few of these photos were so beautiful that they needed to belong only for the eyes of my future husband and for God so I actually went back recently and deleted the photos I felt this way about.
I started this blog out posting about how I want to be beautiful for two men – for God (Yes, I know He is technically not a man) and for my husband (who I will not be joined with for some time)…but I don’t want to just be beautiful for them I want to honor them. I want to honor them with my beauty and to steward the measure of beauty that God has entrusted to me in a way that honors my husband and honors my God. Even though my husband is not my husband right now, he is still my husband, just not yet…and I can still honor him with how I steward my beauty right now. Someday when I am married I will be able to unleash my beauty upon my husband during those intimate moments that do not belong to the world, but until that day comes I need to tend to it in a way that is holy and pure. Will I sometimes miss the mark as I make the decision to post a photo and later regret it, probably, but I will be trying my best to be holy, pure and honorable while at the same time contending for my beauty by doing all that I can to be beautiful for my husband when we are made one, and for my God both now and forever.
In the end any beauty we have is a gift from God and for God and His glory. May He be glorified and honored in any measure of beauty that He gives me grace to have. Honestly, I feel like God wants to help me to be beautiful for my husband too! I feel like He wants me to honor Him and my husband by taking care of the gift of beauty that God has entrusted me with. We each have been given a measure of a variety of things and we are called to be stewards of that measure. Do things happen that are beyond our control? Absolutely. Do we live in a fallen world? Absolutely. But to not take care of what God has given us with excellence is to treat lightly that which was a gift from the Lord Himself.
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27
“Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own, You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body.”
I Corinthians 6:19-20 AMPC
So beautiful, remember Whose glorious and gorgeous image you bear today and let Him beautify your heart, your mind and your body for His glory…Remember how beautiful you are!