"Natural beauty speaks eloquently about the Beauty of the Creator that it modestly reflects. They are God's footprints." ~Saint Bonaventure Every morning when my daughter wakes up, she loves to get dressed and attempts to pick out her outfit and put on Mommy's shoes (she's only 14 months old 🙂 ). She loves when I tell her, "You look pretty, Therese!" Even though she is so young, she recognizes something "mysterious" or special about being a female. A few weeks ago I wrote about the basic foundation of becoming a woman of God to combat our distorted culture; primarily looking to Mother Mary as the perfect example of womanhood, prayer, and confession. There is so much more we could go into but this week I'm going to focus on how the very nature of the female body points to the very mystery of Christ himself. Authentic beauty is somewhat distorted in our culture today. Well what does it mean to be "beautiful", to reflect the Beauty of the Creator? Our very feminine bodies point to a deep reality so intricately tied with the redemption of Christ. First, the woman's intimate organs are not visible. They are "hidden" within her. This is clearly different from a man, who is outwardly visible. God made it so because something that is hidden refers to something mysterious, something that should be protected. For example, a study was done on a college campus of the differing ways men and women carry their school books. All the woman would hold their books in front of their chest and all the men would carry their books at their side. Already, nature reveals this desire of a woman to "protect" and "nurture" something hidden within. A woman's body symbolizes a garden that should be protected, and the for the keys to belong to God. It is God's property in a special sense that is to be kept untouched until He allows "the bride-to-be to give the keys to her husband-to-be". How beautiful it is when on the night of the bride's wedding she can say to her husband, I have kept this garden unsullied for you; and now that God has received our pledge to become one I entrust my keys to this garden. Your body is a great mystery. God intended it to be this way. This mysterious character of the feminine genius is a reflection of the greatest event that has taken place in history. The Incarnation~ God becoming man. Jesus was hidden for nine months in the womb of the Virgin Mary. Our savior of the world, was kept a secret for almost a year, and only the most humble of souls knew. Even St. Joseph was not informed for sometime. This has profound meaning. God's mysteries are secret and hidden. The female body has the capability in partaking in the life giving and redemptive properties that our very own Mother Mary partook in, she brought our Salvation into the world through her "hidden" womb. How I hope we can all see the beauty of our bodies in a new light, even through the pains our monthly cycle can bring. Rather than see our fertility as a "disease" (as culture tells us), lets embrace our bodies as a great gift from God the Father. Your body points to the Incarnation! This week I challenge you, every time you look in the mirror and start to question your "beauty", remember the incredible "hidden" gift your body holds. Remember that God created the female body exactly the way it is because we have the ability to partake in his Salvation, by bringing new life into the world through suffering. You are mysterious and beautiful. Lets be the guardians of purity and teach others by example.