I rarely buy clothes for my five girls. I have been blessed so abundantly with friends who will give me the things their daughters have outgrown. I don't consider it charity or a hand-out. It is God's way of providing for our family. Most of the clothes are nicer that what I could ever afford to buy anyway. And the excitement and energy that a bag or box of clothes can generate in our house is enough to power it for a day.
On Wednesday evening, a lady from my church gave me several bins of clothes for my girls. She told me that the clothes had belonged to her older daughter, who models. When I heard that I knew there had to be some great stuff in the bins.
Oh, was there ever!
On Thursday morning I took a break from school and we went through the clothes. There were several pairs of high-heeled boots, purses, three pairs of large sunglasses, shirts, jackets, pants, high-heeled shoes, and . . . A WEDDING DRESS, GOLD FORMAL EVENING GOWN and AQUA DRESS loaded with sequins. Now, mind you, I wouldn't let them be caught alive out in public in these dresses when they are teenagers and young adults, but I see no harm in them playing together and being princesses for an afternoon.
Take four girls, three gorgeous dresses, high-heeled shoes, mix them all together and what do you get? A fashion shoot! The girls played together all afternoon with those clothes, taking turns wearing them, posing for pictures, doing their hair and makeup. My oldest, Belle, was the photographer. Ella did hair, makeup and posed everyone. I now have 53 pictures on the computer of their afternoon of fun. And, I've heard talk that there'll be another fashion shoot tomorrow.
I had such a blast watching them yesterday. The conversations, looks, poses, and compliments they kept giving each other had me chuckling and smiling all afternoon. I'm convinced little girls are born hard-wired with a love of frilly, sparkly, glittery things. They love to dress-up and be told they look pretty and beautiful. It makes them feel special and confident. I remember having them look in the mirror after their baths when they were 2, 3, and 4 and asking them, "Are you beautiful?"
"YES!" they would answer.
"And why are you beautiful?"
"Because God made me!"
I long for them to carry that belief and conviction with them throughout their lives. I want them to like how they look and think of themselves as beautiful. But, more than that, I want them to know how to be beautiful on the inside. Right now, it is my responsibility to build into their lives character qualities that God tells us makes a person lovely and beautiful: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. If they can dress themselves on the inside with those "clothes," it won't matter how they look on the outside. Those qualities will radiate from inside and they will be beautiful to others and in the eyes of God.
How I pray for the wisdom to raise beautiful, godly young women who can confidently go out into the world and make an impact for God's kingdom. To watch them as they play with these clothes, maybe it will be in the fashion industry.