If you have read my book, you know this already.

I used to hate me. 

As a teenager, I was my own worst enemy. The only thing that was worse than looking in the mirror was looking in the mirror while trying on new clothes. It was horrible. I spent many a high school shopping trips wiping away tears in a dressing room.

I didn’t buy nice clothes. It felt like a waste. I didn’t wear pretty things. What was the point?

My heart breaks for that Annie. She missed so many chances to be beautiful.

God has taken the last decade and a half and done a mighty work in my heart and mind. He has changed me from the inside out. Though I still have to fight the lies in my head, it is minimal compared to what used to rage between my ears.

Hence the reason I want to blog about the most beautiful dress I have ever bought. Because it is a redemptive thing, you see.

There was a fun New Year’s Eve party this weekend, swanky stuff, cocktail attire. My plan was to wear a new bridesmaid dress [that is also, luckily, gorgeous] but I decided to pop up to the mall just for fun. I had a little Christmas cash that I was willing to drop on a new dress.

I entered the department store and encountered a very kind lady. She asked my size, the occasion, and then her eyebrows raised. “How do you feel about sequins?”

See, here’s another thing. When God changed my heart and mind to be able to see myself more the way He sees me, a lot of things changed. I started to genuinely love some girly things that I didn’t before … namely, SPARKLE / GLITTER / SEQUINS.

So when she offered sequins, my eyes said it all. But I still answered, “yes and yes and yes please.”

She reached through a line of dresses hung on a rack to the very back. She said, “we only have one of these and it is in your size.” And then she pulled out a navy blue one shoulder number, covered from top to bottom with blue and black sequins.

I had a few other dresses in my hand, but it was useless. My heart beat always and only for that blue sequin piece of beauty.

I tried it on. I sent a picture from the dressing room to the fashion decision makers in my life. We all agreed.

It was beautiful.

I loved every minute that I got to wear it. And I’m going to wear it as often as possible in the future. To lunch? Maybe, if you ask nicely. To your birthday party? Or your wedding? Or to buy groceries? Probably. Because I love that dress.

(Me and Nichole and Lyndsay)

Why tell this story? It seems weird to spend a whole post talking about a dress.

I’m writing this in honor of that fifteen year old Annie, that girl who didn’t know she was pretty. I’m writing this because I would give anything to sit down with her. She needed to hear that when you look good, you feel good. That a beautiful dress can change the way you look AND feel. She needed to know that she was prettier than she heard in her head.

I didn’t know then. But I know now. And I am so glad to have seen, first hand, that God can take the lies away and replace them with truth.

And that He has made everything beautiful in its time.

[Will you share this story with a young woman in your life who needs to read it? Or a friend who needs to know that there is hope for her sad heart? Maybe she will listen better than I did. Maybe she will find a beautiful dress sooner than I did.]

Also. Just for kicks. I got my nails painted with tiny confetti sequined nail polish. Do you love or do you love? Try it sometime. You’ll be glad you did.

. . . . .

Do you have a piece of clothing that you LOVE? Tell me about it!