I’m not actually a huge make-up wearer. In fact my kids commented on that fact when I said I was giving up make-up for Lent. They noticed this particular feature of their mom, I was touched that they noticed.
However, I know what’s in my heart.
I know why I use make-up when I do.
I wear it when I’m going out of my house, anytime I have to meet people in real life, when I go to work (if I happen to have a job to go to), when I go to church. In other words, when I feel I need to make an impression, when I know people might ‘SEE’ me. When I care about what other people think.
Three different things influenced me to give up on the make-up for Lent:
#1. A Bible study that a small group of us are doing called Made to Crave by Lysa Terkheurst, which is all about being at peace with ourselves, having our identity in Christ and Christ alone. Craving Him rather than food, appearance, or someone else’s approval.
#2. A book called The Emotionally Healthy Woman, formerly called, “I Quit” by Geri Scezzaro. The first chapter outlines why we need to quit worrying about what other people think about us.
#3. A facebook post by a friend of mine outlining her outrage over a beauty magazine’s survey that didn’t allow for women to love themselves, choose to NOT use make-up or other cosmetic products and generally assuming that we’re all flawed and hate ourselves. She went on to describe how she loves her body, every bit of it and I was fascinated. It isn’t every day you hear that.
All of these influences came across my radar as I was contemplating Lent. Lent is a season of giving up so we can give in to the intimacy of knowing Christ more. I am tired of being dissatisfied with me.
God created me in His image and He said that I am good. This body has nurtured six lives, five made it out into this world and are walking around because of this body’s work on their behalf. Why don’t I love it more? It is pretty amazing!
I realized that even though I use make-up very little I use it to hide myself. I want people to see me a certain way. I don’t want them to see that I was crying for a half hour over nothing before I got to church. I don’t want them to see the ravages of many nights of poor sleep. I don’t want them to see the drain of anxiety, depression, and exhaustion. I don’t want anyone to see any of that. So I put the make-up on.
So I put the make-up on.
I want people to perceive me a certain way. Apparently I care what they think and I don’t know why. As I have had to restrain myself from reaching for my mascara I have had to remind myself that I am already loved. I have to remind myself that God sees me and thinks I’m great, He knows why I was crying.
My comfort, value and worth all needs to come from God himself, not my eye shadow skills.
It’s been a harder thing to not reach for that cover-up than I thought it would be. I had no idea how much I try to hide, but I’m painfully finding out as I have to trust him to cover me rather than my foundation.
Can’t say that I’ve reached the point of peace with myself (I gave up the scale, too), but I am hoping that at the end of this 40 day period I will have more to share of this journey to wholeness and contentment in my own skin.
I was made for more…