Monday, March 8, 2021

Devotionals for the Heart: True Beauty

You’ve Got the Look
A devotional by Cyndi Staudt

“When Moses came down Mount Sinai carrying the two stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, he wasn’t aware that his face had become radiant because he had spoken to the Lord.”– Exodus 34:29 (NLT)

I’ve never been good at doing my makeup … or my hair.

In fact, beauty skills have eluded me my whole life and I grew up never feeling fully “girlie”.

When I would have a dance recital or, as I got older, an aerial performance, I vividly remember being backstage getting ready while many girls came in with large makeup cases full of foundation and false lashes, brightly-colored shadows and glittered glosses, leaving me feeling completely inadequate.

I remember venturing out to buy myself a trendy case of my own, filling it with all the goodies a girlie makeup case needed (and the sales girl recommended). Next performance, as I sat in front of the lighted mirrors, I proudly opened my metallic treasure box, dreaming of stepping onto the stage where I would no doubt stand out wearing my face that was sure to look like a Michelangelo masterpiece. I quickly realized I had no clue how to apply this smorgasbord of face paints. So back to the store I went.

A kind sales lady with a flawless face painted me up. She then proceeded to take a piece of paper with a diagram of a face and step-by-step colored that piece of paper with each of the items she used on me. Surely I would join the ranks of supermodel armed with my products and paint-by-number instructions. It was foolproof! But apparently not Cyndi-proof. Somehow I felt like I always looked like the toddler that had gotten into her mom’s makeup stash. Sigh. 

Did you know on average, women will spend approximately $300,000 on makeup in their lifetime? Just as interesting, the average woman spends 29 minutes per day applying make-up in order to achieve a “natural look”. Wait, what? What if we spent that 29 minutes in the Word instead? Or that money on Kingdom pursuits? Or at least some of it.

While it’s okay to want to look nice, the Bible has some great advice when it comes to our appearance. And we would benefit from not just reading these verses, but taking time to let them really sink in. 1 Peter 3:3-5a (NLT) says, “Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. This is how the holy women of old made themselves beautiful.” With my makeup skills, or lack thereof, this is a plan I can get behind and maybe even get good at.

It’s no secret spending quiet time with the Lord is good for our soul and spirit. However, the Bible shows us repeatedly how time with the Lord can dramatically, and visibly, change our outward appearance as well. Numerous verses throughout the Bible reveal to us how others were able to visibly see a difference in those who spent time in the Lord’s presence. Countless other verses give us insight on this matter. Read these verses, for example: Luke 2:9, Psalms 50:2, and Psalm 80:3.

Just like Moses who spent time on Mt. Sinai in God’s Presence (Exodus 34:29), others can tell when we have been spending time with the Lord (and when we haven’t for that matter). Though they might not be able to put their finger on exactly what is different, they recognize something is different. These are some ways that people know something is different about you: You have a “certain glow”. You remain calm under the pressures of work. You seem to have a gravitational pull that makes others want to be around you or share their worries and struggles with you.

While they may not know what the difference is, we do. And it can be summed up in one word: Jesus. As you pray in God’s Holy Spirit, you begin to fill with the unmistakable presence of God that emanates from within and shines for all the world to see. And as you read through the promises of God, you get the confidence and reassurance that you are not alone and the worry lines begin to soften on your face. It’s like natural Botox only better because it’s free and you can access it daily for a touch up anytime!

So next time you are craving a spa day for relaxation, restoration, and a rejuvenating facial but don’t want to spend $250 or more on a spa package, just open the Word of God (The Holy Bible) and enter into God’s presence. You may just come out of your prayer room looking like a Spirit-filled supermodel!

Let’s Pray: Heavenly Father, thank You for being the Master Aesthetician. Help us to turn to You and Your Word for the rejuvenation and replenishment our bodies and spirits crave. Remind us that nothing in this world will ever satisfy us or develop in us the qualities and characteristics that You can and will, if we simply seek You with our whole hearts. Give us hearts that always seek more of You and a soul that longs to be near You. And when we finish our time with you, let us relish in the internal serenity and outward radiance that is evidence of time spent in Your presence. In the precious name of our Lord and Savior Jesus we pray. Amen.

*Note from Alexis:
Cyndi's devotional today reminds me of the song, "Alone in The Presence" by CeCe Winans. Listen to it here.

Author Bio:

Cyndi Staudt is a Jesus-loving, adrenaline junkie who is devoted to living her life for Jesus Christ until the day she is living with Him.

With a passion for cultivating a craving for God’s Word, her devotions and Bible studies are saturated with faith and hope to stir your soul to connect with God in deeper, more intimate ways.

Through her writing she hopes to ignite your desire to read God’s Word, invite your heart to experience God’s love, and inspire you to live your live life “souled out” to the One whose love has no limits.

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