We are told from the time we are born that what is most important is on the inside.  “Pretty is as pretty does.”  I can remember an older relative saying to me.  But, if that is true, why is it also that we hear from such a young age, “Isn’t she beautiful?  Look at those gorgeous brown eyes!”

We recently held a Night of Beauty at our local church for single moms.  We had hundreds to show up and receive free hand treatments, makeovers, spa gift certificates, and free high-end perfume.  We also prepared a free meal and childcare for the event.  It was truly a blessing for many of the women.  And although we were pampering their outside appearances, we were able to tie in an important message about true beauty.

I'll share just a few simple thoughts here.

From the time you were born, you were created with specific intention — not as an afterthought.  (Reference Gen. 2:21-23)  That means your hair, your shape, your eye color and any other physical attribute you have is that — an attribute!  It is not a curse or an inconvenience.  Just because the cover of Elle magazine says you must be a size 0 with long blond hair and thin hips…..doesn’t make it so.

Nothing makes you more attractive that self-confidence, joy, and peace. 

What aroma are your exuding? Bitterness and offense is a stench that can be smelled for miles.  In fact, we smell you long before you open your mouth.  (Your body language and facial expressions say much.)   Contrastly, peace, joy, and love are those traits that make one desirable to be around.  That is how we were created, to yearn for those characteristics.

Focus on what is important — How kind are you? Are you quick to forgive?  Are you slow to anger?  Are you excited about the future?

Jennifer Maggio is an award-winning author and speaker who is considered one of the nation’s leading authorities on single parents’ and women’s issues. She is founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries and Overwhelmed: The Single Moms Magazine. For more information, visit http://www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.