Thursday, January 7, 2016
Who is the Woman Wearing the Clothes?
Often times, we meet people and immediately assess who they are by what they’re wearing and the way they look. We closely examine their shoes, hair, makeup, handbags, etc. and try to calculate the kind of person they are, their level of “fleekness” and even ballpark how much money they make per year. More so, we voluntarily (or involuntarily) use this as criteria for whether or not we will get to know them better, and a leading factor for getting to know someone else becomes an exercise of shallow exterior examinations.
Please understand that I’m in total support of putting the best version of ourselves forward—fixing and primping everything that we can control—but sadly our personal best may never be deemed as “good enough” for someone else. The terms “best” and “perfection” then become subjective, and the world continues being a place filled with people feeling inadequate and “not good enough.”
What if we spent as much time and energy working on, and getting to know the woman wearing the clothes as we did selecting and judging outfits, lipstick colors and hairstyles? What if we started each day with a fresh outlook and attitude just as we do with our underwear and tights?
This week my church is fasting and praying for seven days (as we do every year to kick off the new year), and during last night’s service I thought to myself, what are you going to do in 2016 to better you, Crystal, the woman wearing the clothes and the woman behind the makeup? That moment was very real and introspective for me, because it caused me to shift my thinking. It caused me to admit that I was aiding the perpetuation of a vicious, criminal and shallow cycle. Subsequently, allowing me to really see the folks around me, not just as “people,” but as individuals of eternal destiny, made in God’s image. Shifting my perspective and point of view then prompted joy and Thanksgiving in my heart, because every woman, and man, in that room became a vessel of purpose and greatness, and that’s exactly what our crazy world needs.
So here’s the challenge for this year (which may be new to some and the gold standard for others), when you meet someone new, or even when you encounter someone that see every day, view them as more than the clothes on their backs, and more than their exterior—but try to understand who they are and figure out how and if you can support them in fulfilling their destiny. We were all created for a purpose and sometimes we can use a little bit of help from someone else along the way.
So, what’s your purpose, and who can you help today?