April 17, 2013

on beauty

"I wish I had a different nose"
"I always wanted blue eyes"
"If only I had tan skin"
"My face it too round"
"I need braces for my crooked teeth"

These phrases have passed my lips many times during my lifetime. I am guilty of looking in the mirror and picking apart almost every feature on my face. As I've grown up, I've come to accept and even embrace some things about my appearance. I've started to accept compliments about my big, brown eyes and have been grateful that my teeth are pretty straight for never having braces. And yet . . . many mornings I wish I looked differently in some way or another. 
Why do we do this? I know I shouldn't and I often give in to my weakness of insecurity BUT . . . I also know that I am a daughter of God and I am important to Him and He loves me the way He created me (big nose and all). There's an incredible peace that comes from recognizing who I am and what I am worth. I can't forget the words I heard spoken at a conference for young women in 2005:

I plead with you young women to please be more accepting of yourselves, including your body shape and style, with a little less longing to look like someone else. We are all different. Some are tall, and some are short. Some are round, and some are thin. And almost everyone at some time or other wants to be something they are not! But as one adviser to teenage girls said: “You can’t live your life worrying that the world is staring at you. When you let people’s opinions make you self-conscious you give away your power. … The key to feeling [confident] is to always listen to your inner self—[the real you.]” And in the kingdom of God, the real you is “more precious than rubies.” Every young woman is a child of destiny and every adult woman a powerful force for good.

I want you to be proud you are a woman. I want you to feel the reality of what that means, to know who you truly are. You are literally a spirit daughter of heavenly parents with a divine nature and an eternal destiny. That surpassing truth should be fixed deep in your soul and be fundamental to every decision you make as you grow into mature womanhood. There could never be a greater authentication of your dignity, your worth, your privileges, and your promise. Your Father in Heaven knows your name and knows your circumstance. He hears your prayers. He knows your hopes and dreams, including your fears and frustrations. And He knows what you can become through faith in Him.

I watched this video on our perceptions of our own beauty and as I watched the reactions of the women, I felt the tears start to flow. A little bit out of shame that I would also be guilty of negative criticism of my appearance but also out of love and joy that people generally see the good in each other. If you haven't seen it, watch and realize that you are more beautiful than you know.


  1. Dear Lizzy,
    may I call you 'dear'.

    I don't know you in person, but I had the opportunity to read what you tell about yourself and your family on this blog.

    I want to say THANK you for this. You are beautiful, you have bright eyes, a happy smile, beautiful legs. Your hair is lightly curling - love it!
    You are a great mum and you have lovely kids!

    This is what I see and can read.
    Bless you!

  2. You are gorgeous, inside and out!

  3. This made my day. Here I sit, unshowered, no make-up, hair up in a frizzy bun... and yet, I feel empowered, encouraged, and beautiful! Thank you Liz.

  4. This made my day! Here I sit, unshowered, no makeup, hair up in a frizzy bun... and yet, I feel empowered, encouraged, and beautiful. Thank you Liz.

  5. Ever since I first came across your blog I was awestruck at how beautiful you are and light your countenance is. I've honestly tried to be more that way myself. You have beautiful children, and so do I. You're a member of the same church as I belong to, and so I know we have similar beliefs and traditions. You've struggled with weight as have I and you are an example to me of someone who strives to be a better person every day. It's funny, because reading your wishes sound very opposite of mine. I have blue eyes/blonde hair but I love the look of brown eyes/blonde hair, or most of my life I've even wanted brown hair. My nose is also not my fav feature. I think you have a beautiful round face whereas I think mine is too long. I loved watching the video. It reminded me too that the love and forgiveness and mercy we afford to others we are often stingy with when it comes to ourselves (and not just in terms of looks). Our Father in Heaven probably weeps at how critical we are of ourselves. He gave us these bodies as a gift and often we don't appreciate them or even treat them well. Thank you for this post. It gives me more resolve to appreciate what I have been given. Just like all our blessings, we may not always get exactly what we want but we should appreciate what we do have, and He wants us to know how amazing we are.

  6. You now have a swagger wagon. ;) Welcome to big-time mammahood, as my mom friends call it.


  7. Oops... I posted something on this one that was supposed to go to your minivan post. Sorry about that...

    Aaaaaanywhoosle, YOU ARE STUNNING. Thank you for this wonderful, inspiring post (and blog). God bless you.

  8. Preach it Liz!!! ...well, and Elder Holland. Every time someone mentions that I look like you I giggle at my internal dialogue, that goes something like this, "Yahooooo, I must be one hot babe!" I love your guts. Inside and out. XOXO


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