How cool is it that the same God that created mountains, and rivers, and streams looked at the Earth and thought the world needed one of you too?
I was asked to write this article about three months ago. At the time I thought I was ready. I even sat down and started writing; I still have the rough draft saved to my computer. I thought I knew what confidence was and that I could really inspire girls with it. But, I was wrong. As I sat down and started to write, I struggled. I had so much trouble trying to put my thoughts into words. This is when I knew I wasn’t ready. Something inside me was telling me wait. I had no idea what it was, but this weekend I found it. I found the reassurance I needed to write to you about finding confidence in my beauty.
What happened this weekend? This weekend I fell in love with the Lord all over again. This weekend I learned what it meant to truly love. To love myself, to love others, and to love Jesus. This weekend I attended Awakenings 31 with my church in Lake Doniphan.
You see before this weekend I thought I was a good Christian. And I was, but I didn’t really understand what that meant or even believe it myself.
The past couple months have been extremely rough for me. For those of who don’t know me, I am the current Miss Missouri Teen for National American Miss and I attended nationals in Anaheim, California in November. I had the dream of becoming National American Miss since the age of seven. This was my fifth time at nationals, and this was not the first I had been in close distance to the crown. However, I failed to walk away with the national crown once again. As you can imagine, I was devastated. I’ve spent the last three months wondering why? What could I have done different? Why was I not good enough?
Shortly after nationals I talked with Amanda about my experience and everything I was feeling. Amanda was my mentor for several months leading up to the pageant and she quickly became much more. It was before our chat even that she asked me to write a blog about how I found confidence in my beauty and one about respect. Respect? No problem. My platform for nationals was Respect Revolution: Equipping Youth with Respect and Character. I had worked months on this one word, defining it, understanding it, implementing it into my life, and teaching others this one simple word. Trust me at the time, I also thought I knew what it meant to have confidence in my beauty. I went to nationals more confident that I had ever been and I could not have been more pleased with my performance.
But once again I was wrong. Through out my preparation for nationals, one thing Amanda and I talked about quite frequently was my confidence and the constant self-doubt I had. I didn’t realize it then but now looking back I ask myself, if I was at the prime of my confidence and I truly believed in myself, how could I have any doubt at all lest alone so much of it? Simple. My confidence was actually lower than it has ever been.
After nationals, I felt completely lost. I had worked diligently for months for this one goal and it consumed my life to where I lost sight of what I really needed at the time to help me win. I needed Faith. Having Amanda as my mentor was by far the best thing to ever happen to me. If not for her, I probably would not have turned to my faith at all as I prepared for nationals. Since building a friendship with her and getting to know her kind heart, I have never wanted to have a relationship like she has with God so much. I had this sudden desire to feel the unconditional love she often spoke about.
So, after this heartbreak, after feeling completely and utterly let down and disappointed in my self, I turned to my faith. I turned to my faith to help me search for something new to be passionate about. Now don’t get me wrong, this was not something that happened over night. did I come back right away and start praying and getting answers? No! I tried new hobbies, clubs, focusing on my grades, even meeting new people. But yet nothing came close to give me the joy competing did.
This article is not about my faith. And many of you may not find your confidence by worship, but I can say this, there is no beauty greater than knowing you are loved! This weekend showed me what true love is, what it’s supposed to look like. Love isn’t perfect - I am not perfect... but I am Faith. I was fearfully and wonderfully made for a purpose! Was my purpose to be National American Miss? Maybe not. But you know why that is so great? Because now I can work towards something new knowing that it is even greater than the plan I had for myself!
I found confidence in my beauty by finding the meaning of love I found confidence in my beauty knowing that I was given special talents and gifts, and I am meant to use those talents and gifts with a PURPOSE.
I am ENOUGH. I am WORTHY. I am BEAUTIFUL. I am CONFIDENT. So again, though you may not find your confidence the same way I did, I know you will find it somewhere. I pray that it is somewhere with passion and hope, and love!
I will leave you with the bible verse that changed everything for me. I hope you can find peace and understanding just like I did, and create your own meaning of confidence and beauty.
“For as in one body we have many parts, and all the parts do not have the same function, so we though many, are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another. Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us exercise them.” Romans 12:4-6