Where do your validation comes from?
I’ve realized that in this generation, we’ve allowed a lot of unimportant and minute things to validate us. We allowed money, people and even status, to tell us how worthy or unworthy we are. We have also allowed social media, television, bill boards, and everything that pertains to the media, to give us value. We as women are constantly in search of the next best thing to feel good about ourselves; from fashion, hairstyles and even men. At one point, even I struggled with this very thing. It wasn’t until I actually sat down and evaluated everything that I realized there was a problem. When you take away people, their opinions, fashion and stop seeking the overall approval of men, what is left? I feel like these questions, these thoughts, are something we really don’t take the time to dwell on.
Let’s be honest for a second, how often do we take a moment to truly understand who we are, apart from the ideas and standards that this world tries it’s best to impart on us. This mindset we have when it comes to determining our worth through these temporary things, are bricks that we build around ourselves to feel better and to even mask our insecurities. Whether it is our weight, or even the color of our skin, where we take the time to actually alter the levels of pigment on our bodies. Whatever the struggle of loving ourselves may be, at the end of the day, all of these elements ties into self-expectance. Until we take the initiative to intentionally be okay with the way we look, and fully embrace the way in which God created us, we will continue to have a negative outlook on our appearance.
The effects of what society sets as a standard of beauty takes place in all ages. I noticed the same thing in my 3 year old. When it comes to her, she feels the most beautiful when she is dressed and her hair is done. I recall a time when I was supposed to do her hair but wasn’t feeling well, so, I just put it back into a ponytail. After finishing up and letting my daughter go to look in the mirror, she tells me “Mommy I don’t like this, it isn’t beautiful.” Through this, I realized this is something that is in us.
I always wondered as women, have we ever just stood in front of the mirror to admire and soak in all of who we are? The raw and natural part that we are afraid to show at times and be proud of it. How can we truly expect anyone to love us, or treat us right if we can’t do that for ourselves? There’s a passage in the bible that tells us that we are made in the likeness and image of God. However, I feel that even with us Christians we tend to deny this very truth. We don’t believe that we look like him. We don’t believe that we are created in his image. We don’t believe that we are enough. I myself struggled with not taking genuine complements. What I had to realize is how can I expect my two daughters to see how beautiful they are, if I can’t even do that for myself.
A lot of us struggle with identity issues mostly because we didn’t have seeds of knowing our self-worth and through Christ planted in us. That is why, I made sure that me and my husband remind our daughters day in and day out how beautiful they truly are. We constantly remind them that they are princesses and are valuable. I want this generation to know that they don’t need the newest make-up brand or fancy outfits to feel beautiful. They need to know their value doesn’t come from men. When we know who we are, we don’t need all of these earthly things to validate us. What I want is for those who were once insecure to realize, in whatever they may be struggling with and where ever they find themselves, they are able to stand and look at themselves and think “I am beautiful, fearfully and wonderfully made.”
My advice is, when we wake up every morning, before the makeup, before the nice hairstyle, and before the put together outfit, stand in front of our mirrors and speak these life giving words. Even if we don’t believe them yet. Sometimes we have to keep speaking these things before we can see them. Whatever it is that we feel that we are not, may we cast those negative thoughts out and let truth reign over us. Until we understand how deep our words go, we will always have these feelings of insecurities. So with that being said, begin to believe in the fact that validation isn’t something we should seek from men. It is from being in Christ and in knowing him, we have all the worth we will ever need.