The photo was old–at least a few years–and completely accidental.
I was trying to capture some photos of me in my classroom on timer mode late one blustery evening since I was essentially friendless in Seattle at that point. I must have taken dozen upon dozens of shots….and they were all awful.
Until that one.
When I stared at it in the viewfinder, I knew I looked pretty in that split moment. It was quite the astonishing revelation for me, I can assure you. It didn’t matter that the 100 plus photos before it were less than flattering. I now had proof that I could be pretty.
I felt an intense need to share it. I wanted others to know that there were days/minutes/moments that I was beautiful.
But as I considered the photo in the same manner that Gollum considered his “Precious” I knew that it couldn’t be shared. Posting the photo would just be honoring twisted motives and strengthening lies. So I buried it in the archives of my laptop.
Of course, I found it a couple of weeks ago and at the perfect time for the attack. My curls were particularly unruly that week so I used 300 degrees of heat to smother them into submission. I went to town curl free and seething mad. I was angry at everyone who liked my hair better straight then curly. Why should I have to spend an hour each day changing what God has given me just to fit in? The answer, of course, is that I don’t. But I didn’t care. I wanted to play the game. So I decided that I would post that old photo on facebook as a litmus test of “true friendship.” Those who remarked that they preferred my girls were my real friends. Those who dared “like” my photo never really loved me.
And then 80 people liked it–more than any other photo I have posted on facebook in the 8 years I have had it. As I scrolled through the list of names, I realized how twisted and wrong my plan had been.
In my desire to become pretty in a common place way, I had purposed in my heart to be divided from those whom I know truly love me. I used and abused my friends and my family. When I consider it now, I am so embarrassed. Frankly, the entire plot reeks of 4th girl drama. I am so sorry.
But as I sit here in the prayer room I am brought to repentance. I consider not my own beauty but Yours.
Can You feel my heart as I reach for You?