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Now for today’s post…
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This morning I saw a Dove commercial on Facebook and I can’t get it out of my head. It is one from their “real beauty” campaigns. In the video, they show a man a series of photos that contain faces of models. As they look at the photo and describe the model before them, their heart rate is being measured. Towards the end of the photos they are shown women in their lives – a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, etc. As the men describe the beauty of their loved ones their heart rate rose and at times their voices would quiver with emotion. The point of the commercial was to help women develop a positive relationship with the way they look.
I think this commercial stuck in my head because this weekend Brian and I celebrated the 17th anniversary of the day he proposed to me. I thought about how young and in love we were and how just being near him sent my heart racing. I thought about how he would gaze at me and get this “look” that told me that he loved me as much as I loved him.
Our wedding photographer caught a glimpse of that look on our wedding day. I love the way Brian is looking down at me and I remember seeing all his emotions there in his eyes.
Fast forward almost seventeen years and we’ve been through some amazing times and some rough times. We’ve survived the normal trials of caring for babies and toddlers with its messy days and sleepless nights. We’ve survived family trials, miscarriages, cancer and the death of a loved one. It would have been easy to fall away from each other if not for the grace of God! We are still crazy in love with each other but the years have taken their physical toll. We’ve aged.
I look in the mirror and for the most part I think, yeah, that’s me and I’m okay with it. But sometimes I look in the mirror and all I can see are the tired eyes, wrinkling skin, double chin and plus size figure. I wonder, “How in the world does my husband still find me attractive?” Yet, despite the flaws and aging, I’ll still see “that look” when he holds me close or when he steals a kiss in the kitchen or when he reaches for my hand when we are out in public. Because of his love for me, he is able to see something in me that I sometimes can’t see in myself.
However, this goes beyond something we experience with our husband. I see it in my children’s eyes when they hug me, kiss me or tell me that “I’m the best mom eber!” I see it in the loving look of a sister or a friend who gives me a hug when they see me and are eager to catch up and talk.
I see the same thing when I look at my friends. When I think of their various qualities, the things that come to mind are these: she can light up the room with her smile, she would drop everything to help a friend in need, she makes me laugh so hard I cry, she listens to you like you are the only one in the room or she is smart and strong and makes me feel like I am capable of the same.
Despite their various shapes, sizes, ages and occupations, I don’t give much thought to those things. It’s their qualities, their strengths and their kindness that makes me love them. Our friendship allows their beauty to shine brighter in my eyes.
So today, if you are feeling less than beautiful, stop for a moment and see yourself through the eyes of those who love you – a spouse, a child, a parent, a sibling, a best friend. They see beauty in you. They see someone they enjoy being with and are blessed to have in their lives. Be thankful that God made you uniquely your own person. Be thankful for the qualities that bring beauty to your soul and to the world around you.
Today I am grateful for that reminder.
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