I wrote the following letter to Rebekah when she was 10-years-old in the 5th grade.
She is now almost 15 and in high school.
(Not because I’m a prophet. But because I’m a girl,
so I had a pretty good idea how she would feel about herself through adolescence and beyond.)
Have you taken the time to educate your daughter about beauty?
If you don’t, Mom and Dad, someone else will.
Today I watched you. Today while you laughed and ran and smiled and played, I gazed toward you and was, quite honestly, smitten by your beauty. Your hair, your eyes, your smile. Sweetheart, you are gorgeous.
Yet, I know at some point very soon, you will look around at what the world calls “perfection” and you will judge yourself inadequate. The world will flutter “beauty” in your eyes, and you’ll become confused. You will look in the mirror, and in your mind, you will fall short. You will see your long, wavy blondish hair, and decide it’s too short, too wavy or too blondish. You will look at your innocent, friendly smile and decide your teeth are not white enough or not straight enough. You will look at your stunning blue eyes and determine they should have been green, or brown or different.
This, My Dear, breaks my heart. I wish I could shelter you from this inevitable rite of passage into womanhood. But since I can’t, I want to be certain to balance all you see and hear with the Truth:
It’s not real. What you see in the magazines, on the television, in the movies…is not reality at all. Anyone can look like the girls in the magazines after they spend two hours in “hair and make-up.” Anyone can have the “perfect nose” and “flawless skin” with the right plastic surgeon and the right computer software. It’s all fake, Beautiful Daughter.
I was smitten with your beauty today, not because you looked like the girls on television. Not because your hair or body or face met this unattainable standard of perfection. I was smitten today because you were you. One hundred percent you. And, Honey, you are breathtaking.
You are fearfully and wonderfully made by a loving and living God. A God who created you for a specific purpose. And in order to fulfill that divine purpose, He chose your physical features, your temperament and your talents. Everything about you was imagined and designed in the mind of God. There is not one thing about you that was put there in error. There is no one else like you in the entire world, because no one can fulfill the calling on your life but YOU.
Please don’t allow the world to condemn you to a life of inadequacy. Please don’t strive (and fail) to create a body you do not have. Please don’t fall into the trap of thinking your value as a woman is in any way tied to how you look in a pair of leggings.
Of course, I want you to be healthy. Of course, I want you to live long on this earth and feel great while you are here. But more than anything, I want you to do and be everything the Lord created you to do and be.
Your truest beauty shines forth when you are living your life surrendered to God and His purpose for you.
You are beautiful, Sweet Girl, on purpose, FOR a purpose. His purpose.
All my love,