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You Are Beautiful


In the movie Shrek, Fiona is a princess who has been the victim of an evil spell that removes her beauty at sunset and turns her into an ogre. When the sun goes down, she loses her slim figure and attractive face and is transformed into a monster. Only when she finds true love is the curse finally broken and she turns into . . . an ogre? Permanently? This twist on a traditional fairy tale suggests that Fiona wanted to be loved not merely for her beautiful exterior but for the beauty she possessed within.

In our text today the man speaks to the woman, this young field worker whose skin is darkened from a life of toil. To him, she is beautiful, and his words must have been thrilling to her heart. Here is someone who adored her, inside and out. He uses vivid metaphors, word pictures, to describe her beauty in detail, “I liken you, my darling, to . . .” (v. 9).

While modern readers may find it unappealing to be compared to a “mare” (v. 9) or doves (v. 15), these were compliments of beauty for that day. The greater point is that the man takes time and care to describe his beloved in such detail. He sees her completely and loves every part of her: “How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful!” (v. 15). She responds likewise, “How handsome you are, my beloved! Oh, how charming!” (v. 16).

The beginnings of love are filled with words of adoration. While the Song of Songs describes a love affair between two people, for centuries many interpreters have seen reminders of God’s love for His people. He sees us completely and finds us each uniquely beautiful. With God, we are fully known and fully loved.

Apply the Word

Look in a mirror. Do you love what you see? Few of us feel completely enamored with our appearance. Yet what you see is God’s unique creation. Listen today to the way you speak about yourself. Be careful not to mock or put down your own looks. After all, you are wonderfully and beautifully made by God. And you are fully and completely loved.

BY Jamie Janosz

Jamie Janosz serves as a content development manager for Moody Bible Institute. She writes monthly devotionals for Today in the Word and has published non-fiction essays with Christianity Today’s Her.meneutics blog. Recently Jamie wrote a book titled When Others Shuddered: Eight Women Who Refused to Give Up (Moody Publishers). Jamie studied theology and writing at Moody Bible Institute, Columbia College, and Illinois State University. She lives on the Atlantic coast of Florida with her husband, Milt, and daughter, Sabrina.

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