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Online Bible Studies: Treasures of Darkness – Week 3

It’s so interesting reading back on this week and realizing that my battle with the mirror will always be something that’s a part of me.  It’s the one thing I struggle with the most.  Sure, there are good months (years, even) when it’s a non-issue.  But it still cycles back around.  And when it does, the insecurity hits hard.  And it’s surprising.

I’ve learned some tricks over the years.  I can successfully be in and out of the bathroom in 20 minutes flat, ready for my day.  And when I take too long, things spiral quickly.  Josh has learned some tricks of own.  Non-verbal cues of encouragement that he began doing early on in our marriage.  Like noticing when I started sighing while getting ready (the tell-tale sign that my brain was working against me).  And one morning, as I grew more frustrated, he kissed me and walked out of the bathroom, turning off the light on his way.  Then glancing at me as he walked away with that smile that he gives me.  Letting me know that yes, it was intentional.  And it’s time to walk away.

So I was surprised when insecurity came flooding back earlier this year.

New Hair Cut

I decided on a whim to chop off my long hair into a long bob.  As in, I didn’t know I was going to do it until I was sitting in the salon chair.  And with my hair in the ponytail appropriate for wig donation, the stylist was busy getting the right scissors, and my anxiety level rose.  It was as if a needle-phobia patient had a tourniquet on her arm and the nurse was getting the needle ready.

But I cut it off.  And I loved it.  I mean, really loved it.  At first.  And then… I didn’t.

It turned out that this “easy” hair cut was much more high-maintenance than my 20-minutes-in-front-of-the-mirror rule would allow.  And my habit of hair-washing the night before and sleeping on it wet that worked well for long hair?  Didn’t turn out so well for short.

It took me a week to realize what was happening.  I didn’t like waking up feeling ugly.  Like I wasn’t myself until I put the perfectly-imperfect-bend-in-the-hair.  And even still, while I wait for my hair to grow back out again (come on prenatal vitamins!), I have to remind myself daily that what I see in the mirror is not what other people see.  And that really?  His beauty-of-holiness trumps everything.  And He made me just the way He wants me.  So who am I to see fault in that?

this week in review

What was the overall thing that hit home the most for you this week?  Let me know in the comments!

Day One:

You just started getting your feet wet in the topic of beauty and holiness with thinking about the majesty of God – both in His glory, as well as the display of His glory.  How do you think our clothing choices can both conceal and reveal us?

Day Two:

Have you noticed a connection between spending more time alone with God in a daily quiet time and receiving compliments on your appearance?

Day Three:

We all probably have some sort of daily skincare regimen, no matter how simple or complex.  What is your regimen for maintaining a spirit that is not liable to corruption or decay?

Day Four:

Give an example from your life of how beauty has shown itself to be a lie.

Day Five:

I shared my personal experience with beauty insecurities with my danger zone happening to be the mirror.  What is the one thing in your life that threatens to steal your understanding of your own beauty?  Look deeper than the thing itself.  I don’t want this to be a self-deprecating, “this is my worst feature” conversation.  Look to the root of it.  And discuss the Scripture that counteracts those vanity-lies.

a peek at next week

We’re getting ready to head into a week on marriage.  And I say that gently.  And with sensitivity.  Because I know this particular week doesn’t necessarily apply to everyone.  And it can be a quietly heartbreaking and polarizing topic that some of you try to avoid at all costs.

I completely understand (hello – accidental studies on being a mom have not been my jam for the last ten years).  But there is some hope that may or may not give you the comfort in approaching this week.  Just like I have had spiritual children for the last decade, you also have a spiritual husband.  Isaiah 45:5 says so.

You can read more specifically about that in the introduction.  But for now, if you’re in the I-just-cringed-at-the-word-marriage camp, and your heart sank a little?  I see you.  You are not alone.  And I’m praying for you.

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