Elizabeth Taylor died today at the age of 79. I’m not one who normally gets very sentimental over things like this, but truth be told, Elizabeth Taylor always held a special place in my heart. It’s not because of anything she did or the life she lived–it’s because of something my aunt told me when I was little and I’ve never forgotten.
Aunt Pat, my dad’s sister, always said I looked like a cross between a young Elizabeth Taylor and Natalie Wood. I’m not sure about this, but for a girl who underwent relentless teasing growing up, those words stuck with me for years to come and offered some much needed self-esteem. I’m not a woman focused on external appearances and I know worth is not found in surface beauty; but like every little girl, I desperately needed encouragement in that area and to learn where substance truly came from. The playground can be quite cruel and all the afternoons I went home with alligator tears from the name calling, can no sooner be forgotten than my aunt’s words of affection.
True beauty has nothing to do with our appearances, but rather, who we are inside. The private moments and reflections our hearts sing when no one is around says everything about our real self and whether or not we are actually beautiful. For me, beauty means living a life that’s honoring to Christ and seeing myself as He sees me. Beauty is knowing no one is by mistake and we all have certain traits and quirks He intended when He created us–His masterpiece is truly beautiful. Making the most of our time on this earth with our words and actions can leave marks which blot out the scars–but we must actively make the effort and do more than simply think nice thoughts. My aunt, because of her words of endearment toward a child, will always be beautiful. She lifted up and gave precious memories to a little girl who will never forget and remains grateful. I hope other little girls will understand and find real beauty–the kind that digs deep below the surface and resides in the soul with its worth fully recognized because they know the One who made them and He alone is beautiful.
For fun, here’s a little gallery of three girls–you should easily tell us apart.