Sunday, September 4, 2016

The "In His Image" Pageant

A couple of months ago, I posted a blog about a young lady from my church who was working on her Senior Year Project – an “In His Image” Pageant. What an absolute joy to see a young woman with her head and heart in the right place – desiring to influence her generation with helping others see the true meaning of beauty – inside and out. Her “In His Image” Pageant was to promote girls' inner beauty. Her explanation was “In today's society, with so much promoting women's outer beauty, girls need to know that they are special and beautiful just the way they are.”

Yesterday, Megan’s hard work paid off in royal fashion. Last week she met with the girls to work on the talent portion of her pageant. They decorated the letter “B” which stands for BEAUTIFUL. That’s who they are. Megan continued to impress upon them how beautiful they are. She held the main event at Burgundy Place, a Senior Citizen Apartment Complex, so what a delight for the residents to enjoy seeing those adorable girls. The message rang loud and clear. The girls were made to know THEY ARE BEAUTIFUL.

From the moment I walked in, I could see, and only imagine, the untold hours Megan and her team put in to making this such a special event – not only for the young girls, ages 5 to 10, but to those of us who witnessed the completion of her huge undertaking. The decorations, the signage that conveyed her message in an outstanding way, and the theme “BEAUTIFUL” and we knew that she meant far more than outer beauty. One of the signs read “It is not fancy hair, gold jewelry, or fine clothes that should make you beautiful. No, your beauty should come from inside you – the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. That beauty will never disappear, and it is worth very much to God.” 1 Peter 3:3-4. How’s that for a description of beauty that far surpasses what we hear about beauty in magazines and media?

Megan’s brother was her emcee and I might add, he did a great job – especially with the understanding that these young girls probably had never been before such a large crowd and the mere fact that they were front and center with all eyes on them, he helped them ease into their performance and do a great job.

The pageant's first category was dress wear and those cuties came out with their escorts – either their dads or brothers – some brothers weren’t exactly enthused about their role and you can tell it in some of these photos – LOL! Then, if that weren’t frightening enough, the girls answered questions like: “What is your favorite school subject? What do you want to be when you grow up? What animal do you like the best? What does the word “love” mean to you?” They were so sweet in their innocence and I’m quite sure they’ll never forget what “the stage” is like. Now they’ll have a reference – and it’s not near as bad as they might have thought it would be.

The next category was casual wear and out they came in their cute outfits and this time, on the screen were words that their parents used to describe them. Affirming and loving words that certainly described their daughter’s beauty and character from the inside out.

And finally, it was the sleepwear category and because each girl was a winner, they each received their “BEAUTIFUL” sash and crown.

I like to think that this effort, on Megan’s part, was all about instilling in these precious girls a real truth….that they are beautiful and as long as they know that they were made in the “image of God”, they’ll never, ever doubt it. I pray this seed that Megan planted into their lives over the course of this planning, practicing and debuting will blossom one day into confident, compassionate and caring young women. As a matter of fact, I think we all got that message – we are God’s masterpieces and we are ALL beautiful!