The Gap Between Knowing You’re Beautiful and Feeling Beautiful
Every woman (and maybe some men) has had one of those days.
The ones where we change outfits 10 times before finally rushing out the door, and even then, we only leave because we're late not because we think we look good.
The days where we walk away from a conversation realizing we have no idea what the other person said because we were too focused on what they were thinking about us.
Am I reacting the right way?
Did they notice that I forgot eyeliner?
The times when we walk through crowds hoping nobody notices how self-conscious we feel, or the few extra pounds that seemed to appear on our backsides overnight.
Why do we care so much? Why do we worry about what other people think, often to a crippling degree? Are we doomed to a life of chronic insecurity?
You Were Made For More
We were not made to live in constant fear of not being good enough. We were, however, made with the desire to be beautiful and valued. God made us in His image (Genesis 1:27). We were designed with the desire to be recognized, to be seen as beautiful, to be cherished, to be loved, to be pursued.
If we are dependent upon people or things around us to feel secure, our insecurities will never fade. In fact, they will get worse.
God doesn’t just love us. He wants to make me feel beautiful. The knowledge that we are loved by God is not the same as feeling beautiful. Being loved by God makes us beautiful, but if you are a woman or have known one for more than 24 hours, it’s no secret that feelings do not always skip around our brains hand-in-hand with reality.
Since God is the one who created us with the desire to be beautiful, only He can make us feel completely beautiful. The same rings true for feeling valuable, feeling loved, feeling like we’re enough.
The insecurity voids in our hearts are not in the shape of a man, or woman, or anything else this world can offer. They are shaped to be filled only by our Father in Heaven, and that fulfillment includes a security, assurance and feelings of beauty that expand well beyond what societal expectations have to give. Only He can give us, “immeasurably more than we can ask for or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20).
4 Steps To Start Fighting Insecurity
1. Admit the insecurity.
If we are going to get better, we have to admit that there is an emptiness that needs to be filled. Confess your insecurities to God in prayer, and share your struggle with a trusted friend. It might be the most awkward conversation you’ve ever had, but there is healing on the other side (James 5:16).
2. Humble yourself.
Next, acknowledge that nothing you’ve tried so far has satisfied the longing to be enough.
Admitting we have a problem is not the same as acknowledging we need help with it. If we want to see change, we have to humble ourselves and be willing to do things differently (Proverbs 23:26).
3. Get to know your Father.
The more we get to know God, the more we can understand and see Him. The more we understand Him, the more able we are to see ourselves through his eyes (Romans 12:2).
4. Don’t give up.
Changing the way you see yourself is not an overnight fix. Don’t beat yourself up if you continue to struggle. This is not a losing battle. You are not alone. You are on the winning team (Philippians 1:6).
Too often, we fight insecurity by trying fill our need to feel beautiful with everyone but the One who can. Like a kid trying piece after piece in the hole of a puzzle, we get frustrated when none of them seem to work.
But what if, for a moment, we let go of the things we think will make us feel more secure and allowed God to do what only He can do? We can break the frustration that comes from trying to fit the wrong puzzle piece into the empty spot, and experience the security described in Psalm 16:8: “I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”