Sarah Miniard – What Beauty means to Me

25 Mar

 

For the next two weeks, we are doing a series on what God says about beauty to lead up to our March Beauty Bash, Fashion Show and Lunch to benefit the Crisis Pregnancy Center. Today’s interview will feature Sarah Miniard, and I know that you will enjoy hearing from her!

 

What does beauty mean to you?
I have two very distinct answers for this. One being: Beauty is the word, or rather the concept, that we use to describe little glimpses of God’s glory and creativity that we are privileged to experience on this side of heaven. It’s that indescribable “something” that our souls long for, both men and women.

It is those experiences, those moments that remind our hearts of something grander, something greater than ourselves, whether it be a beautiful spring walk, a piece of music, laughter, selflessness, the simple honest love and acceptance of a child, and the list goes on. All of these things in some way draw us in to a moment where we are at rest.

Imagine the way you close your eyes and soak in a good piece of music, or the contentment you feel when your family has a moment around the coffee table laughing at old stories. Ultimately, these moments and this longing for them point us to the Creator of all these beautiful things.

Secondly: Specifically in regards to women, I believe that beauty is what flows naturally out of a woman who is comfortable with her uniqueness; who is comfortable with who she is, and therefore is at rest. I must share a quote from John and Stasi Eldredge’s book Captivating, Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul:  “A woman of true beauty is a woman who in the depths of her soul is at rest, trusting God because she has come to know him to be worthy of her trust.” This book heavily impacted my view on beauty and on being a woman. I would absolutely recommend it, (and my answers to these questions are no doubt influenced by many of the concepts addressed in that book.)

When a woman is comfortable with who she is, she is comfortable and inviting to be around, no matter how physically attractive she is. When a woman is striving, insecure, and suspicious, she is exhausting to be around. This kind of rest and trust flows out of being loved, because we as women are created for love and for intimacy. This is a wonderful and safe concept when I think about my relationship with God. He is unchanging, and I am always and constantly loved by him, and even when I don’t know how to accept that love, it is there waiting for me.

Unfortunately when it comes to human relationships, be it father/daughter, boyfriend/girlfriend, or husband/wife, many women are abused, abandoned, used, or just not loved well.  Earthly relationships can be a source of love and a glimpse of God’s beauty, but ultimately, our main source for love MUST be from our Creator. Out of that flows true beauty.

 

What inner trait about yourself makes you feel beautiful?

I love that my first foot forward with people is to be gracious, even if I start to over think things and want to take it back in order to save my pride, it is still my first instinct. Well, to be honest, sometimes I hate that part of myself. On a bad day I can feel like a martyr or like God is always asking ME to be the “bigger person.” But in retrospect, when I look back on the times when I felt hurt or wrongfully treated, (but still responded with grace and humility,) I am always proud of myself in those moments.

I think that being vulnerable enough to be hurt, but then gracious enough to forgive is a beautiful thing. It’s not easy, and I am human. Sometimes I feel sorry for myself and want everyone to agree with me and tell me that those who hurt me are wrong and I’m right….but then I get with God and he sets me straight. Having a tender heart toward God that is quick to repent and quick to extend grace is one of the most beautiful traits anyone can have.

 

What outer feature about yourself do you love?
I love my hair, or rather, I am very grateful for it. I inherited this thick wavy hair from my mother, and although in my younger years it was often a love-hate relationship, (being that all three of my sisters have no-fuss, pin straight hair, and our in-home haircuts often left me looking like the milk-man’s child), I eventually grew to love and accept it . Over the years, I have become more intimately acquainted with my hair and all of its potential the older I get, and therefore more appreciative. (Thanks God!)

 

What is one (inexpensive or free thing) you or other women can do to make themselves feel beautiful?

I have two things; they are imperative!!
1.) Be INTENTIONAL about cultivating healthy, edifying relationships with other women…women to “do life” with. …Older women, peers, younger women. Reach out to your mom, your sister, that woman at church who prayed with you after service. Ask them out to coffee or lunch, and if you feel they are a safe place, invite them to do life with you and vice-versa. In my weaker moments, these women have reminded me of the truths I am sharing with you today. They love me enough to honor my hurt, but not let me wallow in it. They call out the better woman in me and make me feel more beautiful. (No gossip allowed!!) (…And by the way, a mug of coffee at Panera = $2.15)

2.) Treat your body with respect. My entire life I have struggled with my weight and with emotional eating, but in the past few years I have really had a breakthrough in my thinking. It’s not about size, it’s about respecting and valuing yourself. Go for a walk, sign up for a 5k, and make healthy eating choices as often as you can. Trust me, I am no stranger to a binge day and the self-hatred that follows, and I am also no stranger to the joys of following through with my goals. It boils down to moderation and loving yourself enough to make the hard choices. And you will ALWAYS feel more beautiful and confident when you treat your body well. Start NOW and reject shame, condemnation, and perfectionism when you mess up, dust yourself off and keep moving forward with healthy living.

And just to re-iterate. These things that I’ve shared with you I have to preach to myself on almost a daily basis. Not because I don’t believe them, (or am too dense to remember them,) but for the same reason that I get up every morning and eat breakfast. The truth of God’s love for us is fuel to our spirits just like food is fuel to our flesh. I am still very young, still maturing and still learning new lessons every day. Learning to trust God is a process.

 

Blessings,

Sarah

 

Thanks again to Sarah for her fun and honest interview!

You’re officially invited to a fashion show/beauty bash/amazing lunch….

For more information, please visit the events pages below!

https://www.facebook.com/#!/events/424589357632345/?fref=ts

http://www.successcoachingandtutoring.com/March-Beauty-Bash-and-Lunch.html

***We are giving away a free spot at our March Beauty Bash, Fashion Show, and Lunch – to qualify, please leave a comment on this post on what beauty means to you!

 

If you like this post, feel free to follow my blog or to “like” my fan page below.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Loving-Life/378787838834868

 

And watch my videos here if you like:

https://lholmes79.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/check-out-my-cool-videos-collection-at-lockerz/3

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oRdKMth_eE

 

***Want to become a better wife, or to prepare for marriage, (regardless of whether you’re single, engaged, dating, or divorced?) Get signed up for my “Brides in Training” class – I’m enrolling now, and it’s for EVERY woman regardless of marital status – for more info, leave a message in the contact section of my website below!   🙂   It’s a fun and interactive class that can be taken in person, via Skype, online, or over the phone. Wisdom, fun, and lots of laughs are guaranteed!

http://www.successcoachingandtutoring.com/Brides-in-Training-Coaching.html

 

Love pretty jewelry? ME TOO!! Check out my Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry page – our jewelry is cute, professional, fun, and has that BLING factor that we all love!

http://www.tracilynnjewelry.net/laurenholmes

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