You have probably seen that heart wrenchingly eye opening and extremely effective commercial that reveals volumes about how women view themselves and each other. You know the one, it features a group of women who describe themselves or a stranger to a forensic artist who then draws pictures based solely on the two descriptions.
Without fail, the women’s description of themselves was far less attractive than the stranger’s description her.
Probably the most poignant part of the videos is when the forensic artist reveals the two sketches side by side to the women. Watching their faces transform from small-talk smiles to slight confusion while they process what they are seeing, followed by downright sadness.
The first time I watched the video I cried. Like ugly cried. And then, like every other woman with internet access that week, I shared it.
The video went viral after women who watched it, shared it, their eyes opened to the harsh way they see themselves. Their friends shared it and their friend’s friends shared it. It is fascinating to see women’s self-worth suddenly bolstered when they see themselves through another’s eyes. Because a stranger sees my beauty, I can now see it.
It makes me wonder…what would those sketches look like if they had been drawn by a loved one? How many beautiful details would husbands, boyfriends, best friends, parents or children have been able to impart through the sketch artist?
What if God was doing the describing?
What if we saw ourselves the way God sees us?
He created us, precious and perfect, and regardless of what we do to ourselves or how we or others see us, God can see the perfect creation within. It shouldn't be a major revelation to imagine the depth of beauty God sees within us, but it is. We so quickly forget the depth of God, don’t we?
We forget the depth of His grace, mercy, forgiveness, sacrifice, love, on a daily basis, so of course we forget that He finds us breathtakingly beautiful as well. As we are, not as we think we should be. Not just for what is on the outside, but on the inside as well. Those who love us unconditionally can see so much of what is inside us radiating on the outside as well.
My prayer is that I not only remember that not only for myself, but for my two girls, that the world’s standard of beauty, and by extension our own, is never going to be as deep or as beautiful as God’s.