So my daughter just out of nowhere told me I should wear makeup when I come to her school for an event. Should I be offended? I asked her why and she said because I only wear makeup when I go out. I asked if she doesn’t think I look good enough and she said it’s not that. I wanted to push the topic further but I decided against it. Then like two minutes later, she blurts out, “I can’t wait for your dreads to grow longer!”
I can’t help but wonder what inspired this random request and statement. Does my daughter not think I’m pretty enough? Is she comparing me to other mothers? Did someone say something to her about me? Have I not instilled in her that we are beautiful just the way God made us? I am plagued by these questions and have yet to get any answers.
I take pride in being a natural woman. My hair is natural, I don’t wear any weaves or wigs and I rarely wear extensions and I wear minimal makeup… sometimes. I try to show my daughter that I love myself no matter what I look like and that I don’t need all the extra stuff to be beautiful. At one point in my life I was so against makeup. I felt like only insecure people needed makeup but as I grew older, I came to see makeup as an enhancer and not as a cover up!
The problem is that too many of our young girls don’t know their worth and don’t think that they are beautiful without ‘the extra stuff’. They are bombarded with images of women with long flowing hair, ‘beat’ faces, padded butts, voluptuous breasts and cinched waists. So what do we do then? How do we get them to love who God created?
First of all, we need to love God. Once we love God we will truly love ourselves because we know that we were created in His image and are ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’ (Psalm 139:14). As soon as we love ourselves we can model self love to our girls. Not the type of self love that comes across as being conceited, but genuine, ‘I’m happy with who I am’, kind of love!
Next we have to show love and communicate love. Tell them how beautiful they are and how perfect God made them. Let them know that it’s okay to enhance their beauty but that their beauty does not come from the ‘extra stuff’. Let them hear us call other women beautiful and not just the ones with conventional beauty. Be mindful about how we talk about other females in their presence. Don’t let them hear us tearing others down.
This type of thing takes practice and I have not yet gotten it down pat. I find myself purposely saying how beautiful a person is even though my initial thought might not be that. I have to pray a lot, for forgiveness for my ‘not so nice’ thoughts and for me to see the person through God’s eyes. We have all been programed by the world to think a certain way but as kingdom citizens we are called not to be like the world. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Romans 12:2).
We have to work hard at it and it would not happen overnight but trust and believe it can happen! So I’m not mad at my baby for what she said, I’m happy that it was brought to my attention because now I know that I still have some work to do!
Just doing my Father’s work!