“Your eyebrows feel funny.” She said.
I raised my index finger up and lightly touched them, feeling what she meant.
“Ohhh, that’s my eyebrow gel. It keeps my eyebrows in place– so they don’t wave all over the place,” as I waved my fingers at her in over exaggeration and she giggled.
Her face grew serious and she put her pint-sized hands on either side of my face, “Mommy? You’re very pretty. But sometimes–”
Uh-oh here it comes, I thought— the disclaimer that will probably point out the things I am painfully aware of. (Seriously, this is the same kid who pointed out that my rear end was almost as large as my 5 month pregnant belly when her sister was still growing in there. She is one of those honest types.)
I steeled myself for what was coming but she shook her head and continued, “Sometimes, I just like your face with nothing else on it. No makeup. Just skin.”
Those green eyes, reflecting the light back to me– revealed that she meant every precious word. Unfortunately, I immediately remembered frowning into my bedroom mirror that morning. Paying close attention to every little thing that was anything but “very pretty,” in my mind. I don’t always do that– but the last six weeks I’ve been benched from my usual exercise and my eyes have been given that special fancy spring pollen treatment. It’s been way too much scrutiny and not nearly enough thanksgiving over here.
I ache at the thought of my daughters, one day frowning at the girl in the mirror. I am determined that they walk these halls in complete assurance of their God-made-ness. My heart follows behind them with a pitcher of kind words and truth spoken into their little hearts, hoping to top off their cup at every turn.
And even in my desperate desire to always be the cup filler, I still miss it.
I see their eyes catch the light and the curves of their tiny heart-shaped faces. I savor their delicate grace like only their mother can, the one whose imperfect body was their first home.
Their upturned faces are more than I can handle in the way of breathtaking and all I can do is sigh and smile. But the way I SEE them? It’s familiar.
And in that moment, when my love for them takes every bit of swallowing back tears that I can muster– I remember that I see them in a bit of the same way that God sees me.
And I wish I saw myself regularly in that beautiful filter that comes from knowing what is true.
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:14
But there are still times when we do not feel wonderfully made, when we forget that He has made us in HIS image, when our souls do not know it very well at all. When I am blinded by what I think I see– maybe that is the very moment when I need to KNOW it very well.
May we take a step back and notice the loving gaze of the One who made us with His own hands and makes no mistakes.
And perhaps we should also notice who is coming behind us– watching us and our reflection in the mirror. May they often see us smiling instead of scowling.