“Beautiful,” Friend, Feb. 2011, 44–45


    Ev’ryone is needed for just what he can do. You’re the only person who ever can be you (Children’s Songbook, 142–43).

    “Am I always going to look like this?” I groaned, staring into Raelynn’s mirror. My freckled face stared back at me in dismay.

    Raelynn was my best friend even though she was a little older than me. She was already in junior high, and she told me about makeup and which clothes were “cool.”

    Last summer, we used to pretend we were famous singers. We pretended our dolls were supermodels we had seen on magazine covers. We curled each other’s hair and pretended we were customers in a fancy salon.

    Now Raelynn acted more grown up.

    Lately I was getting bored of pretending too, and the real person I saw in the mirror made me sad. My teeth seemed too big for my mouth, and my face was covered in splotchy freckles. Worst of all, I had hairy arms! Famous singers never had hairy arms.

    Raelynn stood next to me and frowned at her reflection. “Maybe we’ll be prettier when we grow up,” she said.

    I was surprised. Even Raelynn, who knew everything about being cool, did not feel pretty. Our moms often told us we were beautiful, but that didn’t make me feel much better. Moms always say things like that.

    When I turned 12 and started Young Women, I still felt ugly. Now I was even taller than my sixth-grade teacher! The boys in my class didn’t let me forget it and often made fun of me.

    One Sunday, my new Young Women leader stood up to teach. I stopped staring at my oversized feet and looked into her face. The room grew still. I felt the Holy Ghost telling me that I was about to learn something important.

    “Heavenly Father loves you,” Sister Brower said. She explained that Heavenly Father is pleased with how His children look because He created them. “You are some of His most beautiful creations.”

    Beautiful creations? I pictured sunsets, mountains, and beaches. I felt reverence for Heavenly Father when looking at nature, but I had never felt much reverence looking at myself.

    Slowly, I started to feel light and happy. “Satan wants me to feel sad if I don’t look like the girls on TV,” I thought. “But Heavenly Father made me different on purpose.”

    Satan wanted me to worry about my freckles and feel sorry for myself. Heavenly Father wanted me to feel His love and grow closer to Him. As His daughter, I had more important things to do than to try to look like someone famous.

    I went home from church that day knowing I was beautiful, and not because I had changed. Now I could see what I had been all along—a unique, beloved daughter of God.

    Illustration by Bryan Beach

    We are beautiful because we are daughters of God!