Friday, February 4, 2011

True Beauty Conversations: An Introduction

My husband thinks I'm beautiful.

He tells me I'm hot.

I'm a lucky girl, right?



What?!?

You don't believe him?

Don't worry, I don't either.

He pours out love from his lips, the language of his wooing. Rather than letting the words seep into my soul, I do everything I can to discredit each and every syllable that rolls off his tongue.

I point out the extra skin on my stomach.

Stretch marks.

Flaws.

Scars from carrying twins.

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In a recent phone conversation with another twin mama, we laughed joy that our husbands both thought we were beautiful, despite our new bodies.

After a pause, one of us admitted it out loud:

But, I don't believe him.

Then, Melissa posed the question:

How can we train our hearts to hear truth when our husbands express unconditional acceptance of our bodies?

How can Melissa and I hear and believe the words, "You are beautiful"?

________________________________________________

Beauty

This one word haunts women everywhere regardless of location or culture or even socioeconomic status. Himba women in Africa smooth their hair into elaborate dreadlocks with the clay from the earth and rub their skin down with it until they appear wholly red-brown burnished and lovely. Women in China, once obsessed with the beauty of small feet, would bind their feet until bones broke and their feet were permanently deformed; the most beautiful feet were a mere 3 inches. American women starve themselves to be as thin as the Photoshop edited models; and as they age, they resort to tummy tucks and Botox and expensive creams, hoping to achieve the impossible standard of Beauty.

Our hearts were made to crave Beauty.

There are only two things that pierce the human heart. One is beauty. The other is affliction. 

~Simone Weil
But what is Beauty? And does it reside in me? When my husband says that I’m beautiful, how can I receive those words as truth in a culture that says the opposite? What am I going to teach my daughters about Beauty? And, what does God have to say about Beauty?

Join Melissa and I on Fridays as we explore the meaning of Beauty, intersect Beauty with the Word of God, and let Beauty live in our lives.

Feel free to grab our button of this breathtaking picture taken by Melissa, to share and follow our dialogue.

We would love to hear from you! Please comment or email us with your experiences, insights and wisdom, as we embark on this journey and exploration of Beauty.


True Beauty: A Conversation

9 comments:

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

What an awesome topic, Julia!!! I don't think too much about appearances, at least I don't *think* I do. I like to wear nice clothes, and style my hair, and I feel so much better when I'm fit and trim. But it strikes me sometimes when I think about what kind of image I'm overtly - and subconsciously - imparting to my girls.

I think it was your post a few days ago about taking care of yourself that most recently struck me...it reminded me that my girls are looking at me, whether I like it or not. I want them to see the beauty in taking care of ourselves.

I am really looking forward to your blog series! What an excellent topic on so many levels.

Ellyn said...

My new "stripes" make me ferocious, like a tiger. Grrrrr.

Ellyn :)

Amy said...

I'm joining...check out my post!
http://rememberautumn.blogspot.com/2011/02/beauty-made-for-so-much-more-than-all.html

Kendra said...

Oh wonderful...I love this. I hope to jump in soon. What a great idea! My friend Monica wrote this post :http://www.thewriterchic.com/2011/01/to-think-like-man.html awhile back that REALLY spoke to me!!!

Alice Herren said...

Love this series! Good topic :)

Alice Herren said...

Love this series! Good topic :)

Amy said...

I'm joining...check out my post!
http://rememberautumn.blogspot.com/2011/02/beauty-made-for-so-much-more-than-all.html

Ellyn said...

My new "stripes" make me ferocious, like a tiger. Grrrrr.

Ellyn :)

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triump said...

What an awesome topic, Julia!!! I don't think too much about appearances, at least I don't *think* I do. I like to wear nice clothes, and style my hair, and I feel so much better when I'm fit and trim. But it strikes me sometimes when I think about what kind of image I'm overtly - and subconsciously - imparting to my girls.

I think it was your post a few days ago about taking care of yourself that most recently struck me...it reminded me that my girls are looking at me, whether I like it or not. I want them to see the beauty in taking care of ourselves.

I am really looking forward to your blog series! What an excellent topic on so many levels.