Do You Have It….Or Does It Have You?

June 17, 2013 — 3 Comments

Yesterday was Father’s Day.  You guys know how much value I place on the role of a father in their daughter’s lives.  I’ve written about it many times.  It’s not that a mother doesn’t play an important role as well.  I mean, no one can replace your momma.  But, I think the role of a father, specifically in a daughter’s life, is often overlooked.  A father confirms so many things in a daughter’s heart and is often the very picture of our heavenly father’s love and affection for us here on earth.  I know not all dads have played this role well, and none of them are perfect.  However, if your father is still in your life, he is worth celebrating.  I know I would only be half of the person I am right now without my dad.  He was and is always so full of wisdom and truth.  He lives by the rules he held us to as well.  Doing the right thing in the face of adversity taught us what integrity was.

Something my Dad said recently caught my attention.  He asked the question “Do you have it….or does it have you?”  What he was asking was a question of control.  This question was really solidified in my mind when I read Anastasia’s story recently.  It got me thinking about heritage and environment and how our environment sometimes can permeate our sense of identity.  If we don’t self examine our motives for doing a certain thing, we can simply fall into the flow of culture.  Instead of being independent thinkers, we simply do things because culture tells us that it’s right.

my beautiful mom :)

my beautiful mom :)

My mother comes from a generation of women that learned from their mothers that you never leave the house without your lipstick on.  So as a child, that is exactly what I saw – a mom who put on her ‘face’ before stepping outside the house, who would apologize (and still does to this day) if she didn’t have any makeup on.  Contrastly, Anastasia’s mother wore very little makeup, therefore Anastasia grew up seeing natural beauty as the way to be.

Beauty trends have changed over the decades. In the era of Pride and Prejudice, flushed cheeks were a sign of good health.  The women of that era would feverishly pinch their cheeks and bite their lips to increase the blood flow to those areas of their faces in an effort to appear healthy.  In medieval times, a plump figure was in.  It showed you had money to buy food.  If you were thin, you were thought to be poor or sickly.  Fast forward to the era of Twiggy when super thin became the image of beauty and you can see how culture and trend have affected our sense of value and worth.

I say all of that to say this…..Today, we have EVERYTHING under the sun available to us in the way of beauty products and procedures.  But just because it’s available does it mean that it’s beneficial?  At some point are we just following the flow of culture?  Don’t misunderstand me.  I’m in complete agreement with putting your best foot forward, maintaining your physique, keeping up with personal hygiene, and keeping yourself neat.  BUT does any part of that have control over you?  Do you feel the need to apologize for your natural God-given face?  Do you feel like you can’t be seen in public if you haven’t straightened your hair or put your ‘face’ on?  Is there something in your life that is driving your motivation other than your God spoken identity? Do you have it…..or does it have you?

house

What our house looks like 90% of the time. We LIVE here!

Let’s not limit it to makeup… Examine all areas of your life.  I remember a time in my life when I would not have people over to my house unless I had had time to scrub every inch of it.  Everything had to be in it’s place and it had to be perfectly decorated.  God forbid anyone think we actually lived here!  It hindered our social life greatly.

How about with your children?  (Pardon me if I’m touching on some sensitive topics.  I just want you to think.)  There was a time in my life as a new parent that I felt my children had to be perfectly dressed and coordinated with the nicest outfits.  I can remember butting heads with my daughter when she expressed that she didn’t want to wear what I had picked out for her.  After seeing what she actually wanted to wear, I remember thinking “what will people think when they see her?”  How ridiculous of me!  What is more important – what an acquaintance thinks of my daughter or what my daughter thinks of her very own mother?  I quickly decided my relationship with her was more important than any semblance of acceptance I might feel from others.  Her self expression of creativity is an amazing thing!  God help me to never hinder that!

Here is another tough one.  How about material possessions?  Have you ever bought something because it represented a certain status in culture?  House, car, job, etc.  What is your motivation for doing that?  Was is a wise decision or did it stress you financially?  Was it a necessary purchase?  Could that extra money go toward something more meaningful?  Does the need for societal acceptance motivate your decisions in this area?  Be honest…

I visited my mom the other day.  She had been working out that morning and had not had time to ‘get ready’.  The very first

Me... poolside and sans makeup.  No apologies here!

Me… poolside and sans makeup. No apologies here!

thing she said to me was “I’m sorry.  I don’t have my makeup on.”  I just stopped her mid apology and told her she was beautiful.  She is.  I hate that she feels the need to apologize for her appearance when she was doing something so good for her!  I’m not naive enough to think that my one statement to her would change years of thinking that way, but I can certainly choose to change the way I think and impact the way my children think.  I can make a concerted effort to never apologize for not being done up enough, for living in my house and it showing, for making sound decisions for my family that don’t go along with culture, for letting my kids be who they are created to be.  I can choose to never be controlled by culture but rather be moved and motivated by my God-given identity.  Who does He say I am?  I don’t need to apologize for that… and you don’t either.

Anna Bowman

Found of WhoIsBeautiful

 

 

anna@lifestoriesdesign.com

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3 responses to Do You Have It….Or Does It Have You?

  1. Come on with it girl! Yes yes and yes.

  2. Ianthia McLaughlin June 29, 2013 at 2:25 am

    I read your post previously; I had to come back to it. Thank you.

    Blessings,
    Ianthia

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