I spent my all of my high school and college years, flat ironing my very curly hair. Every single morning, I would shower, blow dry, and straighten it completely. If I had to go out with my hair in its natural state, I felt like I wasn’t pretty. I really thought that my hair had the power to impact what people thought. I feared that I wouldn’t be accepted if I didn’t have pin straight hair. I feared that I would never be good enough, that I would never fit in, or make friends because of the way I looked.
I’m older now and I look back and I cringe. I know that these thoughts were shallow, self-absorbed, and ridiculous. But I also know that it’s an indication that there were underlying issues behind these thoughts. It was less about my hair and more about me.
Although I’ve gotten older, instead of going away, my insecurities have simply shifted. I’ve gone from worrying about straight hair, to worrying about my pants size.
Everywhere I look, I’m surrounded by women who believe terrible lies about themselves. Their head is filled with thoughts of being “too fat, too skinny, too flat chested, too large chested, too unattractive”…and the list goes on and on. Where did these thoughts come from? Why do we think we have to look a certain way? It’s simply because the enemy uses the way we view those around us to bring out our biggest insecurities.
It’s okay to look at your friends and admire all the things that you love about them, but it’s also okay to look in the mirror and admire all the things you love about yourself. It’s okay to face your insecurities and be comfortable in your own skin.
When we find ourselves looking around us for validation instead of looking above, our world will always be turned upside down. Once we start learning our worth from our Heavenly Father, we suddenly see ourselves in an entirely new light. I encourage you to ask God what he has wired you for and in what ways he has gifted you. Once you are looking inward, working on bettering yourself, you will notice how little you compare yourself to those around you. Once you align yourself with God’s will for your life, you will suddenly find yourself thankful in the face of comparison!
1 Corinthians 12:19-24 says “But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you”? Or, Head telling Foot, “You’re fired; your job has been phased out”? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the “lower” the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it’s a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair? Questions: 1. In what areas has God gifted you? How has he wired your heart? 2. What have you been consciously or subconsciously comparing yourself to? 3. How can you take your giftings and use them to reflect thankfulness when you are faced with comparison?
About the Author: Amanda is an adventurous spirit who loves people well. She is passionate about helping women step into the calling and purpose for which God has created them. She believes that growth always follow our struggles and that there isn’t much that can’t be fixed by a long nap and a strong cup of coffee. Follow her adventures at livescattered.blogspot.com