If I heard it one time, I heard it a thousand. Through my whole childhood, my mama reminded me repeatedly that, “Pretty is as pretty does.” From a very young age she was teaching me that inner beauty if far more valuable than outer beauty. I Peter 3:3-4 illustrates this point exactly, “Whose adorning let it not be outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on on apparel; but let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.” Unfortunately, society is so focused on what’s on the outside, that even the most physically beautiful females feel as insecure as those of us who are not built like a swimsuit model. I wrote a poem a while back titled, “I Love This Body”, and in it I chronicled all of the amazing things my body has done. It was liberating to think of my body in a positive light, and to thank it for all of the amazing things it has accomplished, and I made up my mind then and there to stop hating on my own body. Now my journey has taken me to this place of internal cleansing, and getting rid of the hidden yuck as I’ve said.
What are the qualities that make a person beautiful on the inside? A person who is beautiful on the inside has love in their heart and shares that love with others, they have a joy inside that lifts others up, they have peace in their heart and make peace with others, they are longsuffering towards those who continually wrong them, they exhibit gentleness in their dealings with others, they always choose kindness, and they have these qualities because they have faith in God. These are the very qualities that Galatians 5:22 calls the fruits of the spirit. In my own power, I can’t consistently have any of those qualities. Today for example, I wanted to be mad at a lady who just didn’t show any kindness towards people who were trying to help her, but the Holy Spirit reminded me that I am forgiven, and I knew I couldn’t be angry with her. I had had a catching all the greenlights kind of day and this one person showed up at the end with her bad attitude; without the Holy Spirit’s prompting, I might have been irritated all evening and rehashing the incident with my people, but because I’m sensitive to the Holy Spirit, I was quickly able to recognize that I myself am forgiven, so why would I be mad over something so silly as a rude person. The journey of internal cleaning has caused me to be quicker at putting on the breaks when outside forces try to steal my joy. There are so many things that are beyond our control each day, and as Christians to keep our joy, we must be sensitive to the Holy Spirit. We will be a much more powerful example of the love of Jesus if we remember to have love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, kindness, and faith. Lets set our resolve to be all that God has created us to be and remember 2 Corinthians 5:21 “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.