He Told Me I Wasn't Beautiful

Last year a boy told me that I was single because I wasn’t tall, blonde, or skinny. He told me that I had an amazing personality but sadly, in today’s world, that didn’t matter. 

He told me I wasn’t physically beautiful. 

I brushed it off because I knew such a hurtful comment couldn’t have been from God. But I think it subconsciously stuck with me. I started staying away from photos or at least trying to be the one who took them, so I could control what people saw. And I started to really question if I knew anything about beauty. 

As an artist I prided myself in having an eye for the beautiful. I made it a point to see beauty in everything and everyone, but it was getting harder and harder to see it in myself. I kept quiet though, because how middle school was it of me to be so worried about the way I looked?

A few weeks ago, a good friend of mine announced on our offsite that she was going to take professional photos of our team the very next day. I literally cringed inside because I knew there was no getting out of it. She was going to take pictures of me whether I liked it or not.

Beth is one of the most remarkable women I’ve ever met. She sees people. 

People aren’t beautiful to her, they are beauty.

She kept telling me that I was gorgeous. And I kept telling her I probably wouldn’t like any of the pictures. As if I needed to warn her that these photos might turn out ugly. Woof. I had been trying to work on the whole self-image thing and here I was being put to the test and I couldn’t think of a single kind thing to say about myself.  

But Beth just smiled. Her confidence in my beauty seemed peaceful and effortless. 

“I won’t like any.”

“Yes, you will. Yes. You will.” She was all smiles. And she was uncompromising. 

And while I still worry too much about my short legs, and the fact that my hips don’t lie, she was right. I did like them. I do think I’m beautiful. I’m allowed to feel beautiful. Beth’s confidence gave me confidence and through the gift of her photography, I got a glimpse of my beauty through her eyes. And through her eyes, I saw a little more clearly what Jesus sees. 

Beauty isn’t in a little pink package tied up with a bow. 

It’s tall and it’s short. It’s blonde, brunette, red and black. It’s curvy and skinny, single and married. I would argue that the only thing it isn’t is perfect.

You are dang beautiful! I know it’s hard to believe, but I think believing it is where we begin.

*Check out Beth Santo at http://www.lionheartedphotography.com

Beth is Magical .jpg
Emily Martinez