“Inner beauty is great, but a little mascara never hurts.” — Unknown
I’ll be honest – I agree with that statement, just a little. If I had to choose only one thing to take with me on a trip, a tube of mascara would be it. Ever since I was mistaken for a boy the summer before seventh grade I made sure that sticky black stuff was in place 24/7/365, thus securing my sense of beauty and acceptability in the world. Inner beauty isn’t as easily seen.
Well, I’m not twelve any more but those feelings of insecurity can still creep in when I least expect. Like a few days ago, when I went on a little bike trip.
I wear the same makeup for a bicycle ride as I do for work, but on the warm Fall afternoon I decided to go for the natural look, just applying mascara and some eyebrow pencil. After all, you wouldn’t be able to see my lashes or eyebrows without it. As the pedaling intensified so did my output of perspiration. No surprise there. And I had to remind myself to breathe through my nose, not my mouth, so I wouldn’t inhale those ever-present, nasty gnats.
It was a good afternoon of fun with my hubby and daughter and a healthy workout for all. We were almost at the end of the ride when a little bugger flew directly into my left eye, stopping me promptly in my tracks. I wiped and rubbed and plucked. Blinked incessantly. Wiped and rubbed again. Asked my hubs to see if he could tell where it had gone. He said he didn’t see it. I asked if I had any makeup smeared under my sweaty eyes. No. It’s all good, he promised.
Feeling that good sort of tired and hungry we packed up our stuff and stopped at a restaurant before we headed home.
When it came time to order I looked the waitress in the eye, smiled and made my request. She smiled back at me, her grin increasing as she turned to go. We ate our meal and went to pay the cashier. As I made conversation with her I made eye contact and noticed an unusual sparkle in her gaze as she also grinned at me.
My daughter and I looked around the gift shop and we both found something to buy. Again I engaged in lighthearted chit-chat with the cashier all the while noticing that her smile had that same quality as the other two ladies in the restaurant.
I dashed into the bathroom before we left. When I finished washing my hands I looked up into the mirror. Oh my. A one-eyed woman stared back at me.
My left eye was blank. Dull. Ugly. David’s earlier appraisal was much more generous than I would have given.
Thank goodness I found out now and not when we first got here. Could I have looked anyone in the eye had I known? A younger me would have been mortified and distressed at my undoing, keeping eyes down until I was safe at home. Instead, I chuckled at the cockeyed image in the mirror and thanked God that my behavior hadn’t been affected by my personally embarrassing condition.
1 Peter 3:3-4 says, "Your adornment must not be merely external--braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; 4 but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God."
I’m still working on this, I’ll admit. I haven’t yet left the house without my mascara well applied. But I’ve learned that vulnerability is a venue for God’s Grace. True inner beauty reflects His love in the eyes of the beholder.
Hello! My name is Vicki Johnson, aka, gracefilledgirl.