I didn’t want to be seen.
My wet hair hung bedraggled around my makeup-less face—sporting a fresh crop of glaring blemishes—and my dark circles could have passed for a set of black eyes. I’ll just duck my head, I thought as I dropped the kids off, and run before anyone notices.
But the odds were not in my favor; just as the thought crossed my mind, there she was—dead ahead. She, who always looked like she’d just stepped out of a magazine: never a stray hair out of place, outfit always on point, little model children in tow.
I diverted my gaze, busying myself with the needless task of adjusting my child’s backpack, as she breezed by without a sideways glance. But the damage was done. Back in the car, I beheld my appearance in the rear-view mirror, writhing with inner shame and berating myself for being so (comparatively) slovenly.
Finally, I caught myself: Why was I ashamed? I’d done nothing wrong. Yet in an instant I had let my reference point for goodness and self-worth slip from Eternal Creator to . . . plastic Barbie. Had I actually tried to physically hide myself from the world?
Ultimately, my folly had nothing to do with my dress or presentation. It had everything to do with rejecting my personhood, my irreplaceable value, in the eyes of the Creator.
Whether we’re tastefully made-up or in our most natural state, God created us to be wholly seen and loved. Far beyond the surface, He’s looking to our depths. From the very second He first animated our souls, He illuminated us from the inside out to become living beacons of His love and His light.
Yes, we are the light, sisters, never to be hidden.
Yet we conceal our light under the bushel of comparison and misplaced shame. We slip on the dark disguise of false humility, allowing the darkness of pride and fear of rejection to rule over us. We deliberately shroud our soul-deep virtues so as not to stand out against the dimness around us.
Don’t settle for the darkness, sister. Our Creator intentionally created us for more—and He needs us to help light the way for others.
It’s time to remove the bushel basket, stand tall, and let the light of your being shine.
Sit with God and consider what you’ve been hiding. Ask Him to illuminate those places of your life so that through them, the light of His love may be better reflected to the world.
Megan Hjelmstad is a wife and mom 24/7 and an Army Reservist in her “spare” time. She’s a bibliophile, tea drinker, sleep lover, and avid admirer of Colorado’s great outdoors. When the writing bug hits, you can find out more about her here.