You say I am LOVED when I can’t feel a thing.
You say I am STRONG when I think I am weak.
You say I am HELD when I am falling short, and
When I don’t BELONG, You say I am YOURS!

Although lunch with my husband was great and our conversation was simple and intimate, our assignment was greater!  As our lunch date winds down and our mood shifts towards our impending departure, I reach into my purse and pull out a tube of Mac lipstick and began to reapply a fresh coat.  Suddenly out of my peripheral view, I hear the enthusiastic voice of our waitress asking  "is that candy yum yum by Mac?  To which I reply, "yessss girl it is!  Within a split second, we find ourselves conversing like sistah-girls and not strangers. As we share about our lipstick fetishes, we end up confessing how our purchases are rarely attained in quantities of less than two!   In speaking about the vibrant pink lipstick I'm wearing, the  young woman with the short tapered natural hairstyle whose high cheekbones accentuate her russet, reddish-brown skin tone mid-sentence says "although it naturally looks good on you, I always apply a darker gloss over it because of my complexion."  And immediately, the vibrancy in which we previously conversed dissipated into thin air!  It was evident the elephant in the room's name was "comparison" and I wasn't having it.  Iyanla Vanzant once said, "comparison is an act of violence against the self."  While she saw complexion, I saw beauty, character, flawlessness and vulnerability stirring and untapped within the beautifully framed texture of her stature.  

If we're brutally honest, we've all engaged in the act of comparing ourselves (or some facet of our lives) to another.  It's amazing how God uses the broken pieces of our lives to reconstruct (sometimes unknowingly) the inner walls of another's confidence.  For a moment, we were two women enthralled in the commonness of our strengths and frailties, victories and failures as our paths collided on purpose.  In our parting ways, I challenged her to "step outside the box of mediocrity" and to "embrace her uniqueness with a newly found fervency "!  More than mere words, her countenance shifted and her confidence skyrocketed upon being emboldened to unapologetically soar.

It's true, we come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, textures, and pasts.  Nonetheless, absent another's absurd and doctored opinion, might we all choose to unapologetically believe what YOU SAY about us, even when they say we don't belong.  Today, God I choose to "BELIEVE WHAT YOU SAY OF ME  is TRUE"!