What did I do for someone else yesterday?
I cleaned. Cleaned as in scrubbing showers, sweeping floors, and dusting corners. Yes, I was a modern day Cinderella. But to be honest, I enjoyed it. Immensely.
There is just something about doing things for someone else that is satisfying. There is something about turning the attention on what others need (instead of on what you want) that brings peace. There is something about stepping away from you and stepping toward someone else that is thought transforming.
Here are my transformations:
1.) Life really isn’t all about your looks. That seems so obvious (or so wrong-depending on where you are in life), but it is true. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what you look like. It doesn’t matter if every person that passes by worships the ground you walk on. It doesn’t matter if you are named “Most Beautiful”. It doesn’t matter if the scale flashes that number you have been pining away for for most of your life. It just doesn’t matter. The outside will fall away. Someone else will come along and steal the spotlight. The weight won’t stay off forever. The beauty, as Proverbs says, is fleeting. When you are focused on helping someone else, your looks don’t even come into play. In that moment, it doesn’t matter what you look like in the mirror. All that matters is that someone else can smile at the end of the day.
2.) If it’s not about your looks, then what is it about? Life is about love. Choosing love instead of jealousy. Choosing love instead of selfishness. Choosing love instead of apathy. The problem with today’s definition of beauty is that it is self focused. It is all about me. When I look into the mirror, I am not happy. So I decide to change my appearance so people will adore me. The needs of everyone else get pushed to the wayside as pursue my perfect beauty. You ignore the phone call of a needy friend so you can get to the gym. You pass by the person that needs a meal. You ignore the pains of everyone around you because you just can’t deal with emotions, not even your own. So you look inward and fail to see the desperation all around you. Beauty is about love. The two are synonymous. True beauty is giving up your wants in order to fulfill the needs of someone else. THAT is what makes you beautiful, not the reflection in the mirror.