I can't explain that realization as anything but a God-moment. He certainly didn't speak those words to me audibly, but in my heart these truths just resonated. And I've never forgotten it. An hour later, I met the singers I looked up to so much. Surely they were weary after meeting hundreds of little girls, but they treated me with such care and love.
I've never forgotten that night. Because, the whole experience seared my heart with one incredible truth: to God, we are all the same. A maid does menial tasks and cleans toilets in service to the Lord while a singer shares the Gospel on stage in service of God and takes time to talk to each little girl who looks to her as a role model. And He loves them all the same.
To this world, a maid should be pitied while a popular singer should be admired. But not to God. In His eyes, they are equally precious. They are equally beautiful. They are equally loved. Because, you see, they are not defined by their jobs, their social status, their popularity, or their outward appearance - they are defined by His love for them.
I remembered that encounter today for some reason. And it got me thinking. About how precious the Lord's love is. I realized how often I forget the lesson He taught me as a 12-year-old girl. How I often search for my identity in how I look, what I do, in who cares for me, what I've achieved. Sweet friend, may I ask you something?
Where do you find your identity? Who makes you lovable, beautiful, worthy? Where do you find your value? Is it that gorgeous head of hair, your fashion sense, or your well-toned body? Is it your mad organizational skills, your athletic ability, or how well you mother your children? Do you find your worth in your job performance, the number of "blog followers" you have, the "likes" you get on Instagram? Do rank your value on the way men view you? On how many heads you turn while walking down the street? How your husband treats you or your boyfriend's words? Do you feel worthless because you've been dumped too many times or guys just don't ask you out?
Darling, I speak truth to you today - you are valuable not for what you do. Not for how you look. Not for how you are treated by men. Not by your skills and abilities. Not by how much money you make or the academic degrees you've earned. You are valuable not for how you pretty you are, how much weight you've lost or how tan your skin is. You are valuable not for how men view you or what your relationship status is.
God doesn't see the outer trapping we get caught up in. He doesn't see glossy hair or acne-covered skin. He doesn't notice a work uniform or designer jeans. He doesn't care about social status or the number of Twitter followers you have. He cares about you, beloved. He created your heart.