Smoothing out Heart Wrinkes
Minutes after I posted the blog, The Art of Being a Woman: That Outfit Makes me Look Fat, I received an email from our family photographer.
The subject line read: I hope I don’t get in trouble. In the email our photographer began his note with: “Not that any touch ups are necessary…” BUT… “I tried to smooth out some signs of age. As I said above, I hope this don’t upset you.”
The thing that interested me the most about the email from our photographer was the fact that he didn’t take it upon himself to change my husband’s pictures. He didn’t smooth any wrinkles or color the gray out of my husband’s hair.
Before I decide to throw my photographer under the bus or vow never to hire him again, I have to think about who is responsible for creating the culture norm that women must stay ageless and beautiful to maintain their worth. There are many places of blame. But today, I will decide where change starts with one of my favorite mottos: If you want the world to change, start by changing yourself.
I need to smooth out the wrinkles of my heart, not my face!
I blame myself for finding my worth in how I look, dress or compare myself to others. I blame myself for succumbing to social norms that insist women should be “touched up” and picture perfect. I blame myself for devaluing the human aging process, feeling that as I age I will be discarded and the doors to my purpose will be closed to me. I blame myself for not appreciating and embracing the gifts of aging, the seasons of life and the wisdom that come with both.
How can ‘aging well’ be passed on to our daughter and sons if we don’t start valuing the gift of life that God has given us?
In the video, That is what she said-(Women and Death) One of the woman interviewed reminded me that those laugh lines and crow’s feet around my eyes are a testimony of the many smiles that have crossed my face as I experienced the joys and goodness of life.
The famous American actress, Rosalind Russell expressed true beauty this way, “Taking joy in living is a woman’s best cosmetic.” Proverbs 16:31 (NIV) says, “Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained in the way of righteousness.”
It is true that loving ourselves may be the biggest challenge we will ever face in this life. But we must begin the journey of redefining our beauty though the eyes of the One who created us.
I will close with a scripture from Song of Solomon:
“You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you” (4:7 NIV). When you and I truly embrace our identity in Christ, the world will change.