I look at the photo next to a post I’m reading online, and immediately my mind goes to critique like an East German figure skating judge in the 1980 Olympics.

Wow, look at those huge bags under her eyes!

She definitely shouldn’t have worn brightly patterned leggings at her age and size. 

That lipstick clashes with her red hair. 

Score: 3.2/10

Judgy Mcjudgerson.

And then I look into her eyes. And there I see the hope and uncertainty of all of us.

Her eyes say,

“This feels vulnerable and I really want you to like me.”

“I know I have bags under my eyes and I’ve tried everything to change that. I talk to God daily about accepting my looks.”

“I tried on five outfits before landing on this one, wanting to look fashionable and camouflage my hips, but not appear like I’m trying too hard.”

The details are different, but her eyes say she has the same conversations with herself that I have with myself.

It’s difficult for me to look at videos or pictures of myself.


And I’m reminded once again…

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.” Wendy Mass

Jesus looks at the woman in the picture and says “You are fearfully and wonderfully made by Me. You are my beloved daughter, beautiful just as you are. Score: Infinity.”

The woman I don’t know in the photo is longing to be loved and accepted just like the one I see in my mirror. Just like you.

We’re all doing our best. Be gentle.