I was on a quest with dire consequences: Find the perfect outfit and jewelry to make me feel like Cinderella. Should I fail, I would end up wearing a dowdy outfit from my closet and some dinky jewelry from my jewelry box and feel instead like the unfashionable wicked stepmother.
I might admit to a little drama there, but I suspect most of you understand what I'm saying-clothes and jewelry can make a big difference in how we feel and in our confidence for an important event.
For example, awhile back I was scheduled to attend the red carpet premiere for a movie, and I had nothing to wear that was suitable for the evening. I'd attended premieres before in my role as a member of the press junket, and I knew how glamorous and perfectly attired the rest of the media ladies would be. Yeah, all of those young gals with their perfect figures.
And then there was me-the country grandmother housewife chick. Not a fashionable bone in my body. Did I mention I was also horizontally challenged (aka fluffy, chubby, chunky, rotund)? It kind of reminds me of that worksheet we did back in grade school, the one where we had to pick out which item doesn't belong with the others. Yeah, that was me.
After an intense search, I found a dress that was suitable for the event. And miracle of miracles, it even helped to camouflage my muffin top, belly rolls, and love handles!
But I still needed the perfect jewelry to make the dress pop for that final boost of confidence that I desired. I soon discovered that I had a new exercise plan as I walked seemingly endless miles to find the right jewelry.
I felt like Goldilocks as I tried on necklaces, "That one's too big, that one's too small." But somehow it seemed like I never got to "That one's just right." They were too long or too short for the neckline. Or they were gold when I needed silver. Or they just weren't what I had in my head. Although I didn't even really know in my head what I wanted. Sound familiar to any of you?
I was traveling that week so I stopped at boutiques. I went through the jewelry sections at department stores. And I finally stopped at one of those huge stores that carries nothing but jewelry.
I honed in on their display of sparkly jewelry. I found a necklace I loved, one that would give the perfect look for the dress. But when my husband fastened it around my neck and I looked into the mirror, I realized there was one big problem: the delicate chain had disappeared into the wrinkles under my turkey neck!
I was so relieved when I finally found a necklace, earrings, and bracelet that would work-and when I stood on the red carpet to interview the stars, I at least felt like I fit in with the rest of the media. Whew, mission accomplished.
But I was thinking about something today. I spent all that effort hoping to gain at least a little beauty on the outside, but how often do I put forth that much effort to attain beauty on the inside, where it really counts?
What if I'd searched His Word with as much dedication as I'd had while searching for my outfit and jewelry? What if I'd allowed the words on those pages to make something beautiful out of me so that God could be glorified?
What if I'd dressed my soul with love? Love for the unlovable, love for those who need to know about Jesus.
What if I'd spent that much time polishing my heart, wiping away imperfections, making my life shine so that others would see Jesus reflected in me?
What if I'd accessorized my life with kindness, compassion, and a willingness to help others?
Sometimes we forget that physical beauty fades but inner beauty never gets old and never goes out of style. Some of the most beautiful women I know are those who have lived so close to God that they literally sparkle for Him. They've become bling for the King. That's what I want for my life. How about you?
Michelle Cox and John Perrodin are the authors of God Glimpses from the Jewelry Box and God Glimpses from the Toolbox (BroadStreet Publishing Group, Racine, WI). These devotional books would make perfect gifts for someone you love. Visit Michelle at GodGlimpses.com and Just18Summers.com.